The ACT of recognition is far more important than the GIFT itself.
How much thought have you given to recognition and incentives? If you have a team, it’s likely you’ve wondered how much recognition is enough, how much money to spend and how to recognize someone. Am I right? If you’re part of a team, chances are you wish more was done for you and maybe wish someone would take the time to praise you for something great you did. It could be something simple, like doubling your sales volume or even just being there to help a fellow team member. The unfortunate reality is, not everyone thinks the same way and often times what you wish someone would notice isn’t even close to being on their personal radar. So…what can you do about this? You can be the leader you wish you had! You can give to others and make sure they know that their hard work doesn’t go unnoticed.
In my opinion, recognition is HUGE!!! This principle doesn’t apply to just our industry, but any industry. When I was in banking for 15 years, reports were published showing how you ranked against your peers. Let me tell you, I strived to be #1 in my industry. When I was in the branches working as a Personal Banker, I was #29 in the entire state, out of 200+ Personal Bankers. My “boss” made sure to celebrate this with me. As a Bill Collector, I was ALWAYS in the top 3 spots and I was recognized. Recognition makes you feel APPRECIATED and it boosts your self confidence and self esteem. So, ask yourself… “Am I doing enough for my team?” “Does my team know how much I appreciate their hard work and efforts?” If you can’t answer yes or even remotely question yourself…it’s time to up your game and be an even stronger leader!
Here are some suggestions on how you can recognize your team for their efforts and hard work.
- Drop a card in the mail with a message about how awesome their sales were for the month. If you can afford it, drop a $5 Starbucks gift card in the envelope too.
- Create or use a graphic to celebrate a particular achievement. For example, I extract the individuals from my team of 5000 reps, who have $1000 or more in wholesale volume. I post a personally created graphic to my team page and shout out to all of them how excited I am for their success. I list their names and suggest they respond to the post with a word associated with a hashtag. #iamgrand
- Create a ribbon from a supplier like Ribbons Galore, for a specific purpose. I’ve done ribbons for “I BEAT my leader in volume” and “I BEAT my leader in sponsoring”. I will run a report, figure out who of my personally sponsored representatives had higher sales than I did for a month and send them the ribbon with a personally written card. The card congratulates them for kicking my butt! I do the same for sponsoring. You can take this one step further and have the representatives count up all their ribbons at the end of the year and give one even bigger award to one person for having the most ribbons.
- If there is a specific goal to be attained each month, let’s say a title, award for consistency! Consistency is HUGE and often times overlooked. Just last month, I went through my list of personally sponsored designers and evaluated who had achieved a specific title each month in the first quarter. I then sent each person a gift. In this instance, 1 person is allergic to sugar, so she received flowers and the others received Garrett Popcorn tins.
- Mail a card to every member of your team, each time they promote in rank.
- Mail or send a virtual gift card to your top producer, top recruiter and top leader for the top team.
- Showcase a representative for doing something good in the community.
These are just a few examples! I’m sure you can come up with many more!
Now, let’s chat about how much to spend. It’s so easy to be lured into spending more on team incentives than the activity and results generated will justify. It’s important to be generous, but also exemplify a duplicatable process. Your team members look up to you for guidance and ultimately, many will want to wear your shoes 🙂 I mentioned amounts in a few examples above. The average spending threshold for a leader to spend is dependent upon your comfort level and personal finances. Some spend 1% while others may spend 10%+ of their downline commissions…just be practical and realistic. You don’t need to spend a lot, remember it’s the thought that counts.
I personally believe in sharing with several instead of a few. I’d rather send out 30 handwritten cards, costing me .50 a card and .48 a stamp, costing me $29.00 then send one person a $25 gift card. I’m a firm believer that a small gesture goes a very long way.
As always, don’t hesitate to connect with me for more ideas and one on one coaching opportunities.