Category: employee recognition workshop

How Do Your Employees Really Want to Be Recognized?

By John Schaefer, September 25, 2013 8:49 pm

Depends on age, job type and skill level, but most importantly … do they trust the reason you’re asking!

I have been following Cindy Ventrice and her “Make Their Day” Weekly Tips for several years and she’s definitely a pro.  I recently received a link to one of her surveys,,  and found it quite interesting.

While I like where she is going with this, I think that her survey results to be a bit limited.  I’m sure the results are accurate, but they only address a small sliver of the total recognition pie. While some of the best recognition is certainly those honest moments of praise from the boss or thanks from a coworker (we call this Manager to Peer and Peer to Peer recognition and it is free of very low cost stuff), it’s definitely not all that employees value. Successful programs have a more comprehensive structure.

A balanced approach to employee engagement includes:

1. Right Brain Recognition – to show you LOVE them. The most popular form of Recognition is for Length of Service, because it’s well understood, totally objective and fully tax deductible.

2. Left Brain Performance Management – to get them INVOLVED. This is where all of your measurable behaviors reside, so this is a very fluid, flexible and regularly update part of your strategy.  With proper support, this is the part of the program that throws off the ROI that pays for everything else.

3. Full Brain Motivation – to let them know you RESPECT and APPRECIATE them. This is the fun part, and can include all forms of communications, events, Peer and Manager interaction, guest speakers,  activities, charity work and opportunities that show that your understand and believe in your people.

Recognition builds trust, Performance builds teamwork and improves habits, and motivation is the frosting that makes it all worthwhile, so they stay and continue to contribute.  No one part works well without the others.

The companies with the best results have programs that address their employee’s complete brain, including all three tools of engagement above – Recognition, Performance Management and Motivation.  They also know the importance of training employees and managers on not only what to do, but why.  Finally, they implement and support the elements of the program in the proper order, so they engage people emotionally first, then offer them ways to improve productivity and share in the financial results, and finally use creative tools to make it fun and engaging for everyone.

We call this an Umbrella Recognition Solution and you can learn more about the benefits of a comprehensive approach to employee engagement at

Join us for the Rewards and Recognition Webcast March 19, 2013

By John Schaefer, January 15, 2013 9:00 am

Join us for the Rewards and Recognition Webcast March 19, 2013

Join us for the Rewards and Recognition Webcast sponsored by on March 19, 2013. The event is designed for executives and human resource professionals seeking employee engagement, recognition, workplace culture and employee retention best practices. We’re pleased to announce John Schaefer of Schaefer Recognition Group will be presenting Use Compensation to Improve Employee Engagement, Promote Culture and Support a Recognition Strategy.

Learn why traditional forms of recognition and compensation are not working in today’s workplace. It used to be simple with logo wear and trophy-value awards. Now there are four distinct generations in the workplace; each having different views about how they want to be rewarded and compensated.

As an employee recognition industry we have not done an effective job of teaching our customers about the difference between recognition and compensation, how to best use these tools, and most importantly, how to measure the results and prove ROI. Through this webcast we want to show you how to use compensation to improve employee engagement, promote culture and support a recognition strategy with all four generations in the workplace.

Event link:

John Schaefer

John Schaefer

John Schaefer is a Consultant with over 20 years of experience helping companies realize and react to what he calls the Employer/Employee Disconnect. “Your people have the capacity and desire to become far more involved and productive than they are today. The resources required are freely available, if you simply choose to use them,” says Schaefer. “The key is to get your managers and supervisors to embrace this challenge by seeing what’s financially in it for them.”
Schaefer Recognition Group will share a thorough understanding of the WHAT, WHY and HOW of employee recognition and training to help you – Optimize You’re Most Valuable Asset – PEOPLE!

Presidential Debate Body Language and Corporate Culture

By John Schaefer, October 17, 2012 7:45 am

The recent Presidential and Vice Presidential debates have certainly started a national conversation about body language. Greg Williams, The Master Negotiator and Body Language Expert, described the vast difference between President Obama and Governor Mitt Romney in the first debate as, “one man bombed and the other man appeared superior.” Make a note that Greg stated in this article that he watched as a non-partisan viewer. What can we learn about corporate culture in the workplace by watching the 2012 Presidential debates? Continue reading 'Presidential Debate Body Language and Corporate Culture'»

Join us for the FREE Rewards & Recognition Webcast October 29-30th!

By John Schaefer, October 10, 2012 7:30 am

Culture, The Ultimate Competitive AdvantageJoin us for the Rewards and Recognition Webcast sponsored by on October 29-30, 2012. The event is designed for executives and human resource professionals seeking employee recognition, workplace culture and employee retention best practices. We’re pleased to announce John Schaefer of Schaefer Recognition Group and John Smith of SPARC will be presenting Culture, The Ultimate Competitive Advantage on October 30, 2012.

Learn how to create a top down culture transformation that engages employees and managers. Simple and effective communication techniques are keys to creating a winning workplace culture and you will learn real ways to transform your business and employees.

Creating a workplace culture that engages and retains employees isn’t an overnight process. Attending the upcoming seminar is a great way to learn how to use Culture Change to increase employee engagement and grow your business.

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Employee Recognition Workshop

By John Schaefer, March 18, 2010 12:13 am

Using an employee recognition workshop has been a misunderstood practice for as long as there has been recognition. Traditionally, the workshops focused on how to hand out awards, what to say, what not to say and how to get the most out of the moment.  This is all good stuff, but it skips one important step that can affect the process considerably.  That step is manager training.  Why, because managers tend to see giving recognition as just another thing to check off their overly full “to-do” list and in their haste, their presentations lack believability.  The minute your people get the impression that you’re using recognition as a tool to manipulate their behavior (buy them off) rather than show you truly care about them as a valuable member of the team and the emotionally disengage.

Your employee recognition workshop must include a way of getting your manager’s to see what’s in it for them, so they enthusiastically use recognition because they want to,  not because you told them to.  In the process your efforts will result in a much better use of your time.  The best your employee recognition workshops engage the managers emotionally and introduce a recognition strategy that they can see to be valuable to their department and make their lives easier.  Then, not only will they come across as more genuine, but will actually help you to keep the program fresh, exciting and in line with the organizations goals and objectives.

When we provide your employee recognition workshops, our overriding theme is employee perception.  The more you can focus on the emotional aspects of recognition, the less important the awards, and their cost is going to be in the long term value of the program.  It’s a simple secret with tremendous results and is easy to implement.

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