October 13, 2021 0 Comment

Employee Recognition Program can drive Cultural Change

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Employee Recognition Program can drive Cultural Change

Today, organizations are trying to build an organization culture and align employee behaviors to it. However, it is much more challenging that it sounds. An employee recognition program can drive cultural change – let’s look at how organizations can do it right.

Why is Organization Culture so Important for Organizations

Oversimplified, organization culture is a set of social behaviors and activities that employees indulge in at the workplace. It is all about the collective experience of employees while interacting and collaborating with their co-workers.

Culture can be best defined as the glue that holds a workplace together by enabling transparent two-way communication, recognition, and feedback.

A good organization culture can enable employees with the freedom to express their ideas and opinions and feel truly valued for their efforts and achievements.

Importance of Recognition in Driving Cultural Change

Setting up a rewards and recognition program can motivate employees to repeat desirable behaviors within an organization. By recognizing employees who display such behaviors, the organization can send out strong positive message to the entire workforce. In addition, an employee reward program helps in establishing acceptable workplace behavior from employees.

The employees feel motivated to emulate the performance, efficiency, skills, and behavior that their peers have appreciated and rewarded for. A good employee recognition program can enhance overall happiness and satisfaction levels, which is critical for a positive organizational culture.

Tips for Driving Cultural Change through Employee Recognition

Steering the organization culture in the right direction is an ongoing process as the organizations goes through many changes. Hence, by aligning culture with the values, business objectives, and recognition programs, organizations can get the desired results faster.

So, here are a few key aspects that organizations need to focus on while trying to drive cultural change through recognition:

 Tips for Driving Cultural Change through Employee Recognition

1. Recognize Behaviors, not just Performance

To drive cultural change, organizations should encourage supervisors to recognize employees for desired behaviors in alignment with the core values. Recognizing performance is important, but managers should recognize behavioral aspects as well, not just the outcomes. Means matter as well, not just the ends, when it comes to driving cultural change.

Simple measures such as note of appreciation can promote a culture of appreciation and collaboration. Organizations should encourage managers to reward and appreciate their team members by including it in their KRAs. Implementing an employee rewards platform can help managers reward and recognize instantly through through Spot Awards.

2. Empower Employees to Recognize Each Other

Peer-to-peer recognition is a good way to empower employees whereby they can appreciate their co-workers on their own. Hence, such initiatives, help in assuring employees that their opinions are valued; which in turn, results in better engagement. In fact, Watching their superiors praising their co-workers is likely to motivate them towards peer-to-peer recognition.

Employees are more likely to recognize their peers for behaviors rather than performance. Using online employee recognition platform that enables employees to recognize their peers by for the core values demonstrated by them. Hence, it can help in reinforcing such behaviors that are in alignment with the organization values and culture.

3. Involve Top Management in Recognition Programs

To implement any lasting change within an organization, it requires the complete support and encouragement of the top management. This is true even in case of building a culture driven by recognition. This can be achieved through their presence in offline or virtual award ceremonies. These forums can be utilized to drive the importance of values and culture in individual and team achievements.

The involvement of business leaders at various levels and types of employee recognition activities can have a major impact. Hence, their presence makes it much more effective as employees feel inspired of being part of something significant.

4. Add an Element of Fun to the Recognition

Organizations strive to create a positive and informal work culture and make recognition exciting and fun-filled to capture employee interest. This can be done through creative employee recognition ideas that are both innovative and fun.

Hence, by adding a fun element to the employee recognition programs, organizations can inspire employees to embrace cultural change more effectively.


The implementation of an effective employee recognition program can drive cultural changes in an organization over time. Such cultural changes can provide long-term benefits for an organization and fuel business growth.

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HiFives (https://www.hifives.in) is an employee rewards, recognition and engagement SaaS platform that enables organizations to digitize, automate and transform their employee experience. The platform enables supervisors and co-workers to nominate, recognize and reward employees using a points-based system. Budget management, jury-based evaluation and multi-level approval workflows are built into the platform. HiFives has social features such as a wall of fame and gamification features such as leaderboards, e-certificates and digital badges. It also has a global redemption system with country-specific e-gift card options. HiFives integrates with all leading HRMS systems, Office 365, Google Workspace, MS Teams, Slack and other popular tools used at the workplace. HiFives is used by many large enterprises, small businesses and startups across 25+ countries in the world, in many industries including manufacturing, retail, technology, financial services and media.