Recognise This! – A leader’s sole responsibility is to focus employee energy on achieving target objectives.

Leaders in an organisation – especially people with the responsibility for managing others – are often overwhelmed with the many responsibilities, objectives and tasks on their own plates, much less those on their employees’. That’s why I enjoyed Chris Edmonds’ piece that focussed expectations of leaders to one clear thing:


The Leader’s Primary Contribution: Discretionary Energy | Driving Results Through Culture

Leaders, your ONLY valuable contribution to your organisation is the creation of employee discretionary energy toward goals.

What is Discretionary Energy?

For our purposes, we define an employees discretionary energy as:

   1. Their willing application of knowledge and skills in service towards espoused strategy and goals, and
   2. Their demonstrated positive enthusiasm for their work, their team & its members, and their customers.

Read More: The Leader’s Primary Contribution: Discretionary Energy | Driving Results Through Culture

Isn’t that the essence of what we expect our leaders/managers to do? Set their employees on the path to delivering strategic objectives and doing so in a positive, helpful way that reflects the company’s core values?

That’s precisely what strategic employee recognition is designed to help leaders accomplish:

1) Clearly communicate expectations through frequent, in-the-moment praise and recognition of employee efforts that help meet company goals

2) But not offer that praise unless such employee efforts are in line with company values and a culture of positive appreciation and recognition.

As we learned in Monday’s post of highlights from an HBR podcast:

"If managers just increased their praise and recognition of one employee once a day for 21 business days in a row, six months later, those teams as opposed to control group, had a 31% higher level of productivity."

Do you agree? Is this list of 1 sufficient for what we need leaders to do? What would you add?

I’m launching my own blog – Recognise This! – on Monday, May 2. Content will be what you’ve come to expect here on the Globoforce blog, but with an expanded focus across the entire Talent Management spectrum. Current subscribers will move with me. If you want to subscribe to the corporate Globoforce Blog for new multi-author content on Globoforce news, events, customers and products, please subscribe here.