Pursuing a higher level of work performance, respect among coworkers and just plain fun.
I think it’s safe to say that everyone appreciates people who do awesome things, especially when it applies to the people that they work with. At Texas Creative, we’ve had an “Awesome Program” in place for years that’s designed to give our employees a platform for venting their appreciation of a coworker’s awesome work performance. It’s a way for the employee to say “thank you” to a coworker and recognize the good work that they did by documenting it for the Awesome Program.
We created a form, the “Awesome Card”, that employees use to document their praise of a fellow employee’s specific piece of work that stood out as exemplary. Any employee can give an Awesome Card to an employee that they feel is deserving of special recognition. The recipients then place their Awesome Cards into the “Awesome Box” where they are collected until we have our monthly social event, where a winner is announced. Here is a good example of a deserving employee’s Awesome Card with redactions, of course:
Picking a winner isn’t easy.
It’s my responsibility to review all submissions and pick a winner each month. But picking the winner isn’t easy. We have a lot of participation in the program, so much so that sometimes it becomes a challenge to pick a single winner. I’ve discovered through my years of reviewing submissions that a deciding factor is to differentiate between employees who are being recognized and commended for doing their job very well versus doing something truly awesome like going the extra mile, giving a 110%, and going above and beyond to help someone who needed help with something that may not have been in their wheelhouse, putting in extra hours or working over the weekend to help make a deadline happen or do something that benefits the company as a whole, or even our community.
It takes one, two or all three of the following traits to be recognized for having done something awesome: dedication, perseverance, and ingenuity. It’s a tough job to pick just one winner, but I look forward to it every month. It’s gratifying — and at the same time energizing — to read through all of the positive comments, commendations and stories about acts of awesomeness that goes on with the staff. It also gives the rest of the staff exposure to all of the awesome things that are going on around them. So, I take my job very seriously and do my best to pick a truly deserving winner.
Awarding the winner is easy.
Once the winner has been selected, then it’s time to award the employee. We have a monthly social event that is usually held out of the office at a local watering hole where the staff can enjoy food and drink as we celebrate the winner with a gift card and read their awesome story to the group. While the winner gloats and revels in their win, we have additional drawings out of the remaining Awesome Cards for additional gift cards and we read those awesome stories as well. It’s good fun for everybody to get away from the office and celebrate together.
Personally, I enjoy watching how much the staff enjoys the program and the giving and receiving of awesome recognition. The kicker to the whole idea of the Awesome program is that everybody wins. The employees enjoy a positive work experience and build relationships with fellow employees, our clients receive a better product and performance from the agency as a result, and the company wins with success, growth and profitability.
If you’re a business owner, how do you reward employee awesomeness? If you’re an employee, what are your thoughts on the Awesome program? Let us know in the comments below?