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50 The PCB Magazine • May 2017 ceremonies could be deployed based on the type and level of performance achieved. All should be planned and executed consistently as to demonstrate the company's commitment to a high-performance culture. Management Makes the Difference The key ingredient to any employee recog- nition program is the staunch participation of management. When an organization's leader- ship lauds an employee's high performance, it boosts morale and teamwork, while fostering an atmosphere of trust and loyalty to the orga- nization. According to a recent Gallup workplace sur- vey, 60% of employees responded that their most memorable recognition came from man- agement, which includes 24% from a high-lev- el leader or CEO. Another employee satisfaction survey asked what would make the employees feel as if the company cared about them. Fifty- five percent of the respondents said that praise and attention from their supervisor would make them feel as if the company cared about them and their well-being. As you would ex- pect, money and benefits scored high; howev- er, recognition from the supervisor ranked the highest of all choices provided. Top Performer Retention Impacts the Bottom Line If you still believe that employee recogni- tion is the "soft stuff" that allows you to easily pay periodic plaudits to the daily grind of your employees, think again. The only impact in pay will most likely be to your company's bottom line. Increased absenteeism and turnover, cou- pled with decreased productivity are too often casualties tied to passive or non-existent em- ployee recognition. The Bureau of National Affairs estimates U.S. businesses lose $11 billion annually due to employee turnover. This turnover is felt most severely when it includes the departure of your company's top performers. Some leave because they do not feel valued or challenged. For oth- ers, minimal recognition is interpreted as lim- ited growth potential. When top performers depart for greener pastures, they pack up their knowledge and training (which you had invest- ed in) and often head for the competition. Some of the world's leading brands uti- lize employee recognition programs as a stra- tegic tool to retain and engage their best tal- ent. These results-driven programs reduce turn- over and provide an environment to cultivate creativity and innovation. Steve Jobs left a roadmap for employee en- gagement at Apple that endures to this day. Un- der Jobs, Apple became a pioneer of 360-degree management. The concept includes emphasiz- ing employee retention and building a sense of community, amongst other areas. Key to the concept is how communication is instrumen- tal to nurturing dedicated and loyal employees. Different Routes, Same Destination Everyone likes to be recognized. However, it's not a one-size-fits-all proposition. This is espe- cially true of millennials. For this next genera- tion of leaders, a monetary award is not the key motivator. Being selected as part of a new project de- velopment team or being tapped for Six Sigma training trumps trophies and trinkets for mil- lennials. These awards are often deemed more valuable as they provide technical knowledge and opportunities for career advancement. Ad- ditionally, millennials place a high value on be- ing part of the conversation. So corporate com- munication programs that incorporate social media enable them to provide feedback and be recognized for their ideas and contributions. Be- yond the generational divide, an employee's po- sition in the company also influences the type and preference of communications. Sales and " When an organization's leadership lauds an employee's high performance, it boosts morale and teamwork, while fostering an atmosphere of trust and loyalty to the organization. " EMPLOYEE RECOGNITION: MORE THAN MONEY

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