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In the quest to attract and retain valuable employees, companies will offer a number of office perks and bonuses to help keep them motivated. But one of the cheapest yet most effective way to retain and motivate top talent is through recognition. According to the Gallup Workplace article “Employee Recognition: Low Cost, High Impact” one of the most overlooked strategies for retaining top performers is employee recognition.

Employee recognition can take many forms. Whether it be simple praise, gift cards or an award, acknowledging good work goes a long way in retaining employees. Employees who feel appreciated are more likely to stay with an organization, thus reducing employee turnover. Employees who don’t feel valued are twice as likely to quit after a year.

Giving recognition not only increases employee satisfaction, it also makes an organization more profitable. Companies who make it a priority to recognize employees raise sales by 37% and increase productivity by 31%. In fact, companies with highly engaged employees outperform non-engaged companies by 167%!

Despite the proof that the benefits of employee recognition are far-reaching, not many organizations make it a priority. According to research, 68% of employees surveyed reported feeling either not engaged or actively disengaged. Furthermore, over 65% of employees report not feeling recognized for their performance at work.

Evidence citing the power of employee recognition is not hard to find. But how does one go about giving recognition? To develop your own approach to giving recognition, apply the PRAISE model: Public; Recognition; Authentic; Immediate; Specific; and Enthusiastic. Public recognition can take many forms. At a team meeting, you can set aside time to publicly acknowledge your top performers. Another option is to have an employee award ceremony.

When it comes to employee recognition, it’s not just what you say, it’s how you say it. Sincere and enthusiastic words of praise from a supervisor or company CEO has a lasting effect. For instance, a Gallup poll found that 24% of employees say the most memorable form of recognition they received came from the CEO. Even praise from co-workers makes a big difference in employee engagement and performance.

Something so simple as employee recognition can have a lasting effect on both workers and organizations. However, not enough organizations make this a priority. The key to implementing a positive work environment is to cultivate a strengths-based work culture.

At K2 Awards, we believe any company can create a strengths-based work culture. No matter what your organization’s size or budget, K2 Awards has a wonderful selection of business awards any employee would be proud to receive. For nearly 18 years, we have cultivated the practice of excellence with our guaranteed fast shipping and 100% customer satisfaction. Let us help you do the same.