5 Huge Benefits of Peer Recognition

28 August 2018

Peer recognition might sound complex, but it's super simple. At it's heart, we're just talking about your employees sharing their genuine appreciation of one another.

In practice we might be talking about informal opportunities for your people to talk to one another about their work, or an extra function that is built into your rewards programme, software or processes - but it always comes back to the same simple concept. When your people recognise the work that their colleagues do, and are recognised in turn, you will see huge benefits in your results.

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Let's look at some of the ways that peer recognition could light a fire under your bottom lines...

1. Keep the Dopamine Flowing 

A report from global performance management specialists Gallup looked at how recognition boosts performance and transforms results in the world’s biggest and best companies. Dopamine, is the short answer – the neurotransmitter that gives people a hit of feelings of satisfaction, confidence and pride peaks when their work is recognised.

Vitally, Gallup also noted that dopamine wears off quickly. They found that less than 1/3 of their surveyed workers had received any recognition in the last week, and that the consequences were serious – unpraised workers saw a 10-20% drop in productivity and results.

So the regularity of recognition has been scientifically proven as a key factor in how effective it is. But maintaining that regularity can be difficult for leaders with more pressing concerns. Peer recognition can help alleviate some of the time pressures on leaders around recognising and rewarding your teams.

2. Leverage People's Social Instincts 

People are programmed to value social recognition. The importance we all place on the opinions of our peers can also be harnessed to drive big results and take pressure off leaders.

Peer recognition helps to create an organic sense of engagement, belonging and appreciation. Even simple strategies can create a friendly, sociable culture with recognition and reward at its very heart, where your people feel appreciated by colleagues from the boardroom to the sales floor.

3. Improve Interpersonal Relationships 

Peer recognition drives engagement across an organisation’s hierarchy and objectives, opening and strengthening communication across teams and encouraging colleagues to take an interest in each other’s achievements.

It works. A Globoforce survey showed that peer recognition is 36% more likely to have a positive impact on results than manager-only recognition. 

That’s partly down to the huge impact on job satisfaction – as author and Harvard professor Dr Robert D. Putnam points out, studies have demonstrated that strong interpersonal relationships at work are “a strong predictor – some would say the single predictor – of job satisfaction”.

4. It can be Easy, Effective and Free

Using a custom-built online ‘points mean prizes’-style platform with a facility to monitor peer feedback can provide robust ROI, and many rewards can require no financial outlay at all.

'Switching on' peer recognition can be as simple as introducing an anonymous comments box that can be read out to the office at the end of the week. Or think about non-financial rewards like being allowed to leave an hour early on a Friday, gaining certain privileges in the office, or earning extended lunch breaks for a week.

5. Keep Hold of your Best Talent 

A Bamboo HR survey found that 75% of employees who are regularly recognised for their work are happy at work. Gallup have demonstrated that employees who feel they receive inadequate recognition are 3x more likely to consider quitting in the next year.

Replacing staff is disruptive and expensive (the Wall Street Journal estimates it can cost 200% of an employee’s salary to find and train their replacement), but regular recognition - including peer recognition - massively improves talent retention and staff loyalty.

Working peer recognition into your organisation’s rewards programme will change the way your teams work, relate to one another, engage with your organisation and drive results.

 Talk to Us About Peer Recognition Now

We would love to talk through your requirements and tailor a rewards and recognition programme around your objectives – get in touch now or call 0161 498 3311 to get the ball rolling.