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Spooky Recognition Story

March 13, 2009

I heard a recognition horror story the other day. It seemed appropriate to share this story on Friday the 13th. Here’s how it went.
A large tech company had been working on a big project for nearly a year. Recently, the project team completed a major milestone.
With great intentions, the site leader put together a glowing email commending each member of the project team by name. He addressed this email to the division director, and copied all employees. Proud of the great accomplishment, the division director forwarded the email onto the President with his own compliments to the team. Problem was, one individual on the project team – a person who had been in a leadership role on the project since the beginning – had been accidentally left out of the recognition. Now this well-intentioned recognition actually had the opposite effect on that employee, who was left demoralized, demotivated, and more than a little steamed.
Morale of the story: getting it right matters. Good recognition is going to be remembered for a long time, but a bad recognition experience is going to be remembered even longer.
Do some managers in your group need a little help with recognition? Check out Terryberry’s Corporate Recognition Training.

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