The One4all Rewards Spotlight Awards report found that four in 10 (41%) workers said that their efforts go unnoticed by their manager or boss most or some of the time.
Many said they have to work outside their normal hours, with 21% saying that this is how they get bosses to notice their efforts. Working extra hours was second only to exceeding targets (27.5%) as the reason for receiving praise. Delivering high quality work (21.1%), good teamwork (19.9%), and maintaining a positive attitude fell into third, fourth and fifth place.
Mike Williams, people director of burger chain Byron, said employers should recognise the business benefits of praising positive contributions. “Any emotionally intelligent business would see the benefits recognition has on an individual's or team's performance, both in engagement and willingness to give that bit extra, as well as the commercial impact on business performance,” he told HR magazine.
“Celebrating the successes of the individuals and team as a whole on a regular basis – and by this I mean in some cases on a day-by-day, week-by-week level – creates a perception of success in the team and promotes positive performance and behaviour, a virtuous circle. Who wants to work for an unsuccessful team after all?”
Williams added: “We see this at a micro level in our restaurants – we keep a keen eye on team engagement because if the teams are supercharged and positive you can see it in the buzz of the restaurant and therefore the service is great. This happens in all businesses, I just think it's most obvious in my sector.”
He provided further detail on the practicalities of making this work at Byron. “We have daily shift incentives to reward great efforts, national competitions and award ceremonies for the best overall performers, and we send our best-performing general managers on holiday every quarter to places like New York,” he said.
“The most impactful piece of recognition is found in the relationship you have with your boss and the way they make you feel personally valued for the contribution you make. Sometimes it’s as easy as saying thank you.”