For companies looking to ignite their brand “peer to peer” recognition platforms are being utilized with increased frequency. Peer-to-peer recognition programs effectively translate corporate goals into day-to-day actions the rank and file can relate to.
All too often companies publish a mission statement that hails such platitudes as teamwork, integrity, focus on the customer, etc. And while these are all worthwhile aspirations they don’t necessarily register among employees without explanation and reinforcement.
So how do companies get their goals off the headquarters entrance way plaque and into the workplace? Leveraging social networking theories (workers are more likely to look upon colleagues for direction than management) they rely upon the observations and/or direct experiences of co-workers to reinforce desired behavior. The interchange reinforces core values in a context that’s relevant to everyday job experiences.
While these awards are highly valued, they have no monetary worth and require no funding or financial control mechanisms. Companies will want, however, to closely audit nominations and post only those that are consistent and connected to the brand’s attributes.
When do peer-to-peer recognition programs have the greatest impact?
Peer-peer programs are especially important tools during times of change. Online postings not only recognize colleagues who went the extra mile to help a coworker or customer, they can also reinforce the value of the new work tool or job procedure. Many firms will actually include links to training and other educational devices that also reinforce a new process thus promoting acceptance and utilization of change.
If you want to improve you work environment and make it more friendly for your employees, don’t hesitate to implement a peer program. As Richard L. Florida highlighted in his book “The Rise of the Creative Class“, people tend to work even for free on projects where peer-to-peer recognition is largely applied. Winning the respect of their co-workers is, most of the time, the kind of reward that any money can buy. Be a progressive manager and take advantage of this free source of recognition!