Incentra Insights

Recognizing Employee Loyalty during COVID (Part One)

Posted by David Chittock on Jun 16, 2021 10:13:00 AM

Recognizing Employee Loyalty

How Can You Show Your Appreciation?

It’s been a long fifteen months. Your employees have gone above and beyond to keep your company afloat. They have been extraordinarily flexible and independent, and in many cases, accepted reduced hours or salaries to minimize costs. So how can you acknowledge and celebrate the sacrifices and adjustments they have made for the greater good of the company?

Suggestions for Recognizing Employees for COVID Support

Recently the Forbes Human Resources Council shared its suggestions for recognizing employees who have gone all-in on supporting the business. The members offered these ideas about how businesses can show their appreciation for employees who have supported them through the pandemic.

  • Be completely transparent. While traditional rewards and recognition help, the most meaningful way to show appreciation in these strange times has been to tell your employees everything. Complete transparency reduces that overwhelming sense of the unknown and allows employees to believe they matter enough to know what’s going on behind the scenes—even if what they see isn’t entirely positive.

  • Offer radical flexibility. It’s been a traumatic year for so many of your team members; they’ve worked tirelessly to support your goals while striving to ensure stability, well-being, and calm in their personal lives. You must return the favor with time and flexibility.
  • Listen to their wants and needs. Your employees care about your company. To reward them, understand what is important to them. Is it a flexible work policy, career development, additional learning opportunities, more communication? Use employee engagement surveys and one-on-one sessions to give them what is meaningful to them. There is nothing more valuable or rewarding than being heard.

  • Take notice of their home life. Show your appreciation by being your authentic self. Meeting lines are blurred between home and office today, giving leaders a glimpse into their team members’ home life. Notice their child’s art, the dog barking when a delivery driver rings the bell, or the spouse or partner who walks into the room during a video call—and have a great conversation.

  • Invest in their well-being. Give your workers extra vacation days, and ensure that they have the resources, tools, and funds to support their well-being. Employee burnout and exhaustion are serious concerns that need to be addressed proactively.

  • Create recognition and reward programs. Saying “thank you” goes a long way; however, longer-term appreciation and recognition should be in the plan. A lot of companies weren’t able to operate at full capacity, yet the stress and anxiety of 2020 ran higher than any normal operating year. Once you’re profitable again or back to regular programming, recognition and reward programs must make a comeback.

  • Increase pay and offer bonuses. Pay salary increases and bonuses as soon as possible. It isn’t all about money, but employees have sacrificed a lot, and often willingly. Companies have asked employees to make these sacrifices for the greater good, and they need to repay those sacrifices as soon as they are able. We don’t want to see companies making profits their employees have essentially paid for.

  • Develop a retention package. The right thing to do for employees, who have endured the pain of more work with less compensation, is to offer them a retention package when the business is comfortable with its future outlook. Help those people who have stuck with you during the most difficult times by making them feel comfortable about your commitment to them during the difficult times yet to come. It’s called goodwill!

Check out our blog post next week for some additional ideas on how to show your appreciation to your employees.

Reinvigorate Your Recognition and Reward Program

If you had to cut back on your employee recognition program 2020, this might be the time to take it to a new level. Showing your loyal team members that their hard work and sacrifices have been noticed and they are truly valued is now more important than ever. Incentra can help get your employee recognition program running at peak performance in days, not weeks or months. Your employees deserve it. Give us a call.


Categories: Employee Recognition