The impact of recognition on wellbeing

Dandelion seeds blowing in the wind

The impact of recognition on wellbeing

Recognition goes a long way in the workplace.

In our How powerful is “thank you”? blog post, we uncovered just how much of a difference recognition can have on your employees’ day-to-day morale and engagement with your business.

As is commonly known, when we get recognised for something we’ve done at work, it makes us feel good. It’s an innate human desire to be appreciated, so when it happens at work we naturally feel more positive about our working environment, and in general too.

There’s science behind it! OE Cam refer to the ‘dopamine effect’ which, in essence, is when employees get a hit of the ‘feel good’ neurochemical dopamine when they work hard and get approval and recognition for it. This process reinforces positive workplace behaviour because people will naturally want to create more scenarios where they get that release of dopamine.

But the impact of recognition goes far deeper than simply making employees feel good. Let’s take a look at the positive effect recognition has on employees on a more personal level.  A simple “thank you” or “well done”, not only has the power to lift the mood of your employees, recognition can support your employees’ overall wellbeing.

The wellbeing of your employees is of great importance, you want them to feel their best in and out of the workplace. Having a recognition strategy in place is therefore crucial because it has a significant impact on employee wellbeing.

To put this into context, here’s an example.

You realise that today is your work anniversary. You’ve been working at your company for 2 years now.

When you come into work, there is a card on your desk to congratulate and thank you for your 2 years of service, as well as a little gift. Your manager also takes the time to verbally recognise your work anniversary, expressing their appreciation for your hard work over the 2 years.

Knowing that your commitment to the company is appreciated makes you feel like a valued employee that makes an important contribution.

This makes you feel happy and proud. You also feel motivated to continue your good work because you know that your colleagues (and your company overall) recognise achievements and milestones, no matter how big or small.  

So, we can see how one simple act of recognition can influence the way an employee feels about themselves and their general emotional wellbeing. Taking the time to show your employees that they are valued triggers a chain reaction which ultimately has a positive impact on their overall mental state.

What’s more, employee achievements don’t actually have to be restricted to work. Your company might want to praise employees who have done something remarkable in their spare time. For example, they may have volunteered at a local charity, or raised money/awareness for a worthy cause. Ultimately, it’s up to you to decide what deserves recognition, but don’t forget about the bigger picture. Acts of recognition, no matter how big or small, will have a positive domino effect and result in a happier workforce and a happier culture.

Imagine how much of an impact recognition has when delivered on a company-wide scale, across departments, multiple times a day, and on a platform where every single person in the business can see it and interact. To find out how peoplevalue could deliver your recognition programme, click here.

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