What Do I Say?

One of the most significant barriers that managers have to using recognition is that they don’t know what to say. Phrasing comments around recognition is easy when you use this format.

  • I saw what you did
  • I appreciate it
  • Here’s why it’s important
  • Here’s how it makes me feel

Use the matrix below to formulate your comments.

Behavior Importance to You Importance to Corporate Values How Do You Feel?

For more formal recognition occasions consider:

  • Who should present? The highest-ranking manager who personally knows the employee and his or her accomplishments.
  • What should I say? Know exactly what is being recognized. What contribution has this employee made to the company? Do not mix good comments with bad, focus on the very best things.
  • Explain the symbolism behind the award. Explain how it relates to the company goals and values.
  • Ask others to prepare comments
  • Ask the recipient to make comments
  • Close by sincerely thanking the recipient

Build Your Action Plan
Brainstorm with the event coordinators in your organization to prepare a pre-event checklist. Include the details of the task, the contact person, and the deadline.

Task Contact Person Deadline

Find out how the recipients like to be recognized.

Research the purpose behind the recognition event. Be sure to plan the event based on the vision and preferences of the recognition planner.

Choose an award. Determine what the award should symbolize.

Train the presenters to make a gold-medal presentation.

Lastly, arrange to meet with members of the organization to evaluate the effectiveness of the event.