Motivating Human Resources through Recognition

Article

Hoberg, William A.; Nicholson, Nancy I.   (1993, ASQC)   AT&T Network Systems

Annual Quality Congress, Boston MA    Vol. 47    No. 0
QICID: 9974    May 1993    pp. 321-327
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Article Abstract

Motivating employees is a vital quality improvement process. At the Systems Business Unit (SSBU) of AT&T Network Systems, an employee-recognition team established a vision and goal, and then interviewed over 120 employees and examined employee opinion surveys. The result was a process consisting of day-to-day, informal, and formal recognition. Day-to-day recognition has become a way to immediately recognize any employee through thank you notes, verbal commendations, and other methods that are sincere, short, specific, and spontaneous. For example, a visit by a manager to an employee's desk to learn more about her work procedures resulted in an immediate compliment. The informal recognition process covers a large number of employees and consists of a ceremony or memento for individuals and teams that meet or exceed quality expectations. Formal recognition for a select number of employees involves a nomination and evaluation process for those who satisfy predetermined criteria. Lessons learned include: get broad support from all employees; the recognition design team should have members from various levels; the recognition process must be flexible enough to handle variations among departments and even among individuals; publicize the process; a poorly planned or implemented recognition process is worse than none at all: do it right.

Keywords

Employee involvement (EI),Human resources (HR),Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award (MBNQA),Rewards and recognition


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