Opinions on Employee of the Month

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Specializes in Rehab/Nurse Manager. Has 6 years experience.

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As nurses, we always appreciate being recognized when we've done a good job.  However, what is the best way, really, for employers to show their appreciation?

At my workplace, we are starting an Employee of the Month program to recognize employees who go above and beyond.  Although I like the idea of outstanding employees being appreciated, I personally have reservations about such a program.  My main concern is that it might lead to animosity among coworkers who don't receive it or make some employees feel as if they aren't important.  To me, highlighting a single person doesn't really emphasize the importance of teamwork.  I spoke with a few coworkers who feel similarly. 

Anyone have a similar program at your workplace? Any thoughts? 

NightNerd, MSN, RN

Specializes in CMSRN, hospice. Has 7 years experience.

The places where I felt the most recognized would give kudos to people who did exceptional work each day and night, usually announced during huddle at shift change. The same effect was achieved when one manager who posted a giant sticky note in the breakroom and would write (and encourage us to write) who we saw going above and beyond.

I also had a manager who would take all the names of people who got called out and would enter them in a raffle. Basically she would buy whoever won whatever they wanted off Amazon up to $25 (I got a looooottttt of Reeses cups the month I won, LOL). It was still a competition of sorts, for those who like that, but everyone who did something awesome got recognized by the team.

I don't like them. It always ends up being a big popularity contest. I am a senior nurse and a leader on my unit. I feel like I have the respect of my co-workers and what I say is meaningful to them.  I like to send out emails or mention in huddles the individual good things I see my co-workers do but I don't mention names. The person who did the act knows who they are and knows that I know. I feel like it inspires others to step up and certainly limits the eye rolls caused by the same people being mentioned over and over while the less obvious but just as good people get ignored. 

BTW, no action is too small. I've mention things such as a co-worker picking up a used Kleenex off the floor in the middle of the hallway that other people just ignored (although I leave that part out of it because my intent is not to chide.)

Edited by Wuzzie

Davey Do

Specializes in around 25 years psych, 15years medical. Has 42 years experience.

Johnny June, a very good tech I worked with both at the state hospital and Wrongway, said he tried to avoid getting awards because it put attention on him.

Johnny believed that awards were like painting crosshairs on your back for the higher ups. Without going into detail and floating my own boat, I have to support Johnny's premise because in my career, whenever I received recognition, it was always followed with bad press.

And I will also note this: Receiving the most prestigious award was followed up with the biggest negative ramification.

"Friends don't let friends receive awards." -Johnny June

hppygr8ful, ASN, RN, EMT-I

Specializes in Psych, Addictions, SOL (Student of Life). Has 19 years experience.

8 hours ago, NightNerd said:

Basically she would buy whoever won whatever they wanted off Amazon up to $25 (I got a looooottttt of Reeses cups the month I won, LOL). 

Where I work we have employee of the month recognized from each shift and we get $100.00 plus a wall plaque and of course our picture taken with the CEO. I’ve never seen staff show any animosity towards the winner except for the few who are disenfranchised and bitter already. We all work hard and are genuinely happy when our coworkers get recognized.

hppy

30 minutes ago, hppygr8ful said:

I’ve never seen staff show any animosity towards the winner except for the few who are disenfranchised and bitter already.

It wasn't so much this as it is when they turn into popularity contests which does happen. I don't think any of my co-workers begrudge legit awards.

ThePrincessBride, BSN

Specializes in Med-Surg, NICU. Has 6 years experience.

Daisy awards, Employee of the Month...all are popularity contests that I don't take seriously. 

Pepper The Cat, BSN, RN

Specializes in Gerontology. Has 35 years experience.

In my experience, here's how these things go

1. For the first few month it's great. People get acknowledge, happy happy joy joy.

2. Then someone the popular crowd does not like gets acknowledge. Grumpy time.

3. The popular crowd does everything they can to find fault with the people outside their circle while loudly complementing their inner circle anyway they can.

4. Acknowledgement program turns into popularity contest and is soon abandoned.

Emergent, RN

Specializes in ER. Has 28 years experience.

Popularity contest...

amoLucia

Specializes in retired LTC.

Night shift rarely acknowledged. And yet there were some really great staff.

Popularity contest, repeating.

nursej22, MSN, RN

Specializes in Public Health, TB. Has 36 years experience.

41 minutes ago, amoLucia said:

Night shift rarely acknowledged.

So much this ^^^^^

 

hppygr8ful, ASN, RN, EMT-I

Specializes in Psych, Addictions, SOL (Student of Life). Has 19 years experience.

55 minutes ago, amoLucia said:

Night shift rarely acknowledged. And yet there were some really great staff.

Popularity contest, repeating.

This why I like our system because it recognizes a member of each shift each month. Plus those receiving awards are nominated by physicians, patients, families.