I’m about to turn everything on its head by discussing rewards and recognition from a completing different perspective. Normally it is discussed in a workshop or verbal campaign directed to managers, and that it is part of good performance management to recognize and reward the efforts of their staff. Now while this is still a must do part of being a good manager, how about we flip this in another direction?
All of us working for a company have a manager. Think about how finding something to recognize them for would do to improve your working relationship. Now I know some of you are rolling your eyes as you read this, “Jim you have no idea the type of manager I have, there is nothing to recognize that is good” but really there is if you think a bit.
I once had the biggest pip of a manager, but if there was one thing I could recognize is that he placed family above all else. If I was ever dealing with a family crisis, illness etc. I could count on his support. Nothing, and I mean nothing was more important than tending to a family issue. While this guy could drive you up the walls with his demands, you knew he had your back when family tore you away from work.
I never thought of it then, but I wonder what would have happened if I had specifically thanked him for that side of him. Would he have been easier to work with in other areas? Although I will never know that answer, I encourage you to find something really worth recognizing about your manager and either telling them, or give them a certificate noting it. Award it in private, and see how they respond.
As most managers will say that recognizing and rewarding can be the best motivators of employee performance, I’m betting that it might just work the opposite direction in improving management performance too.