Corporate values play a critical role in creating a positive work culture and ensuring organizational success. In most successful organizations, corporate values create a perfect balance between the expectations and practicality of getting the tasks done. Developing such values and getting the employees to imbibe the same is often an extremely challenging task for the leadership. One effective way of achieving this objective is to align the employee recognition system with the core values of the company. This might seem extremely difficult and even impossible, given the fact that employee recognition programs and corporate values seem to be completely unconnected. However, bringing the two together can prove highly beneficial in terms of enhanced productivity and better employee engagement.
Understanding the significance of Corporate Values
The core values of a company can be defined as honest and authentic statements about what is essential for the organization’s success. They should help employees to decipher the language of their work environment. The core values help in setting the standards about various aspects of an organization including its brand, the type of talent it intends to attract and the rules of employee engagement in the workplace. For most employees, corporate values also act as the reference point for the behaviors that can help them ensure their professional success, which is why it becomes essential for companies to clearly define and articulate them in a proper manner.
Unawareness of corporate values, their improper understanding or miscommunication paves the way for workplace dysfunction. There are no set boundaries for acceptable behaviors, which makes it easier for employees to avoid acting in ways that may prove potentially harmful for the organization. Most importantly, employees find it increasingly difficult to find meaning in their jobs and this, in turn, affects their level of satisfaction, engagement, and happiness. Disambiguated core values often make the employees feel disappointed and even demotivates them, leading to a significant loss in productivity and efficiency. Corporate values can help in orienting the employees towards the mission and objectives of the organization and help them understand the best ways to fulfill the same.
How employee recognition can drive corporate values
Most business organizations may be unaware of the fact that their employee recognition practices go a long way in communicating their core values to the members of their workforce. This prevents them from taking any steps to integrate their core values with their employee reward and recognition systems. Discussed below are the three most important ways in which recognition program help in driving corporate values:
It sends out a clear message about expected behaviors
The choice of employees for recognition sends across a clear message to the employees about what behavior is expected of them and what is unacceptable. When employees receive appreciation for their accomplishments, their peers are automatically informed about the values that are noteworthy and preferred for the members of the workforce. This naturally motivates them to imbibe these values and develop their behaviors in accordance with the same.
It creates a clearer definition of core values
Employee recognition proves quite effective in clearly defining the core values of an organization for the employees. The employees are actually able to identify the qualities and behavior that they feel are in sync with the core values and hence have been appreciated. It makes the repetition and imitation of these values by other members of the workforce much easier and effortless. Most importantly it does not require the HR and the leadership to create any special communication for corporate values to the employees without any assured outcomes.
It helps in driving individual performance
Employee recognition acts as a means of providing personalized attention to the recipients. At the same time, it helps them to understand how the core values are integrated with their specific roles and responsibilities. They are thus motivated to perform the tasks assigned to them with great commitment, integrity, and efficiency. This naturally helps in driving individual performance while also creating greater awareness about corporate values.
Even though the concepts of corporate values and employee recognition have co-existed for a long time, it is only recently that organizations have realized their strong linkage. With this new found realization, organizations are redefining their employee recognition strategies to include their core values.