It's essential to reward your employees for their contributions to the company, whether it's in the form of formal recognition or tangible rewards. Many organizations have realized the value of positive reinforcement and have made a point of incorporating it into their corporate cultures. Even a little recognition can go a long way towards motivating your employees and generating pride in their work. The problem is that formal reward or recognition of established employees—your company's mentors, for example—often goes undeclared. It's not surprising, really; these employees have earned their places in the company, are self-sufficient, and need a little direction. They already know they're appreciated, right?
Well, not necessarily. No matter how established we are or how successful we've been in our careers, we all need to be reminded from time to time that we are assets to the companies we work for. An employee acting as a mentor to other employees is precious since they most likely have extensive knowledge and experience, good interpersonal skills, and strong loyalties to the organization. Mentors contribute to the company's overall growth, both through their work and their work with mentees. Their commitment is such that they are willing to invest their time and energy in developing the company's future workforce. These are not employees you want to ignore or take for granted but should be recognized regularly for their hard work and dedication.
As we stated earlier, mentors can be rewarded through formal recognition or tangible rewards (such as monetary rewards), credit tokens (like a personalized plaque or pin), or bonus days off. Further examples might include:
- A company-wide email at year-end recognizes the employee for their hard work and contributions throughout the year.
- A profile piece in a company newsletter or website highlights a mentor's work and the value they bring to the company.
- On-the-spot rewards, like a personalized thank you note or certificate of appreciation.
- A quarterly incentive plan tied to their contributions as mentors and the success of their mentorships.
- Small prizes for their efforts, like gift cards, certificates, gift baskets, or spot bonuses.
- Lunch with the President or CEO.
It's ultimately up to the organization to reward your employees, but your efforts to show a small amount of appreciation will pay off in a big way. Employees who are awarded for their hard work and exceptional contributions are likely to continue working hard. They'll know they're making a difference and that the company appreciates everything they do, no matter how long they have been around or how well established they already are in their careers.
If this post resonated with you, check with your organization to see whether you are part of the MentorCloud network. If not, sign up for a demo here! Our vision is to create a mentoring planet in which true equality is achieved, and hard work is rewarded, but it's only possible with your participation.