A lot of resources are used to create and maintain recognition programmes in many organisations. Despite these investments, some employees still do not feel recognised for their work. Research from Kenexa indicates that there could be a misunderstanding of how recognition and feeling valued are related.
Kenexa research found that the survey item "I receive recognition when I do good work" has a norm score (across industries and countries) of 55 per cent favourable. That is, on average more than half of employees feel they are recognised when they do a good job. Contrastingly, the survey item "I feel valued as an employee of this company" only has a 41 per cent favourable response, with 32 per cent actually indicating an unfavourable response. This shows that on average less than half of employees feel valued and one third actually believe they are not valued.
These findings indicate that there is clearly a difference between recognising and valuing an employee.
Recognition is typically tied to what we do - not who we are, while valuing is about acknowledging someone not merely for tasks, but for the deeper intrinsic worth they add to an organisation by just being there.
Research from several Kenexa clients shows that, in general, valuing employees appears to be a driver of engagement (and often the top driver) more often than recognising their efforts.
Organisations that had higher scores in valuing employees tended to also have high scores in recognising employees.
Kenexa looked at eight organisations of different sizes and industries and found that aspects such as encouraging involvement, growth and development, recognising real contributions, showing respect and being fair, empowering decision-making, explaining why an employee is important and talking to them promote higher employee ratings of feeling valued.