Peer-to-peer recognition is the genuine expression of appreciation exchanged between co-workers. Social recognition is the process of providing employees with the tools to create public and meaningful relationships with each other
It’s been long established that employee recognition programs contribute to employee retention, increased performance, higher profitability and a host of other benefits. When companies provide employees with a system to publicly recognize each other, there are additional advantages:
- Peers tend to reward those who they respect and regard as experts. When peers are given the autonomy to recognize each other, it raises the bar for the entire team.
- Encourages teamwork. Often, informal mentorship relationships can be formed, which improves the performance of the entire team.
- It builds trust. Peer recognition takes the perception of the boss playing favorites off the table.
- Can help management to spot talent. Depending on the size of the department or organization, individual employee performance may not be obvious. When peers recognize other peers for exceptional performance, it can inform management.
- Engages employees. Employees that are trusted to recognize each other have more autonomy and understand that management is entrusting them with responsibility for ensuring that the highest performance standards are met.
- Comradery & morale. When employees are encouraged to recognize and reward one another it contributes to building bonds that improve job satisfaction and morale, leading to lower turnover and better customer service.
Social Recognition Tools
Whether peer-to-peer recognition is a stand-alone tactic or just one component of a more comprehensive employee recognition program, there are tools that make it easier for employees to recognize their peers:
- A social network. This could be a members-only Facebook Group, a closed LinkedIn Group, the company intranet or a similar platform that your incentive & recognition program provider includes in their platform. The key is that the recognition can be viewed by team members.
- A meaningful reward or incentive. The recognition itself is important and getting input from employees as to what is meaningful (within budget of course) will make the program more successful.
- You-Tube or similar videos of celebrations. Award ceremonies or other recognition events can be recorded and shared, on a company You-Tube channel, on the social platform or other mediums that can be shared publicly, or with your closed groups. This is especially effective in making sure that remote employees are included.
Organizations understand that creating an environment where employees are encouraged to share, collaborate, innovate and recognize each other contributes to higher engagement, increased productivity and greater employee retention.