Results from BI WORLDWIDE’s 2023 New Rules of Engagement® study indicate that employees whose employer had a formal recognition program were 3.2x more likely to say they have a great company culture. Similarly, employees who received recognition with a quarterly award indicate that they are more engaged, inspired, and satisfied with their compensation. They also feel more included and are more likely to recommend their employer.
While employee recognition programs impact how employees feel about their job and their employer, does recognition influence the behaviours that are recognized? Recognition programs are usually designed to reward behaviours a company wants replicated in its corporate culture – inclusiveness, innovation, teamwork, collaboration, etc. While these can be seen by others, they can be difficult to express as a specific individual objective. By recognizing these behaviours in employees, does a recognition program increase their frequency? Essentially, can an employee recognition program help shape company culture? And ultimately, does rewarding behaviours increase the frequency of those behaviours?
To examine this question BI WORLDWIDE Canada reviewed 10 random employee recognition programs. The programs were from companies of various sizes and industries and differed in the specific behaviours rewarded. If the program increased behaviour frequency, we would expect that, at the individual level, employees would get recognized more often from one year to the next as they were being recognized for these behaviours.
Both analyses showed that recognitions increased – 25% over the first two years of employment and 16% across all employees.