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5 min read

As the year comes to an end and you start thinking about 2020 plans, take a moment to think about how you can make an impact on your people now. Although the start of the year brings a new beginning, there are plenty of ways you can start planting the seeds for culture transformation. Recognition is powerful throughout the entire year, but especially as people begin to reflect on their achievements at the end of the year.

Employee recognition isn’t a nice to have, it’s a must-have for improving the employee experience. 

Our goal at Reward Gateway is to make sure our people’s contributions are valued year-round. I recently sat down with some of our people and asked them about their own reward and recognition examples to see the impact it’s had on their individual performance and how this momentum will carry them through the new year.

 Name: Emily Stites
 Type of   Recognition: 1. Monetary award
2. Peer-to-peer, values-based eCards
 Joined RG: September 6, 2017

Opening a moment of recognition always reminds me why I love coming to work and why I love what I do. It’s sometimes easy to forget how our day-to-day work impacts the larger business goals, but when someone takes the time to send recognition it reminds me that my role matters and to always keep striving to be better. 


I try to send recognition moments whether it’s a large or small win. When we collaborate with teammates across the world, it’s especially important to send them recognition so everyone can see the cross-collaboration that’s occurring across the wider business. It’s a great reminder that we are always better when we work together and share ideas. Recognition and reward has made me feel very appreciative to work for the company I do. 

Download our eBook to gain new ideas for year-end recognition  »

The feeling I get when I receive and give recognition reignites my passion for my job and helps RG achieve its mission of 'Making the world a better place to work!'

The “You Rock” award I received from my colleague helped me replenish my seasonal lotions from Bath & Body Works. It was great to hit up their Black Friday sale and buy myself a little treat during the holiday season.

 Name: Chris Bechet
 Type of   Recognition: Monetary awards
 Joined RG: July 8, 2019

My first week on the job, I was in full onboarding mode and I helped a colleague out with a new task I wasn’t exactly familiar with. It took me a while and I wasn’t expecting anything in return. Afterwards, I received a monetary award – which was a very new concept to me since I had never received one before. I was excited to see this award, but the one thing that had an even bigger impact on me was the fact that I could redeem it for whatever I wanted and I chose to purchase a new pair of shoes.

Whenever I get a compliment on my shoes, it makes me think of this moment and I want to live the ‘We love our job’ value even more. 


Another time I received a monetary award from a colleague on the marketing team and redeemed it on a bed frame, which was something that definitely needed an upgrade, but I was struggling to get around to it. After I received the award for my hard work, it nudged me to finally do it.

 Name: Mike Muldoon
 Type of   Recognition: 1. Monetary award
2. Peer-to-peer, values-based eCards
 Joined RG: August 28, 2017

Like many organizations, things change fast here at RG! We’re constantly in the process of refining the processes by which we pursue our mission to “Make the World a Better Place to Work.” That often means trying new ways to meet HR professionals who could benefit from our experience in employee engagement, and part of that is borrowing tips and tricks from our colleagues around the world.

Recognition has played a huge role in that process, in a few different ways. RGers from around the globe have taken time out of their busy schedules to fly into Boston to share best practices with us. A simple “thank you” or Slack message just doesn’t show the level of appreciation that our team feels.


It’s been amazing to be able to send colleagues eCards and monetary awards to not only say thanks, but to explain the impact that their visits and coaching will actually have on our team and our mission. It’s also been unbelievable to receive recognition from our global colleagues who have seen the work that we’re doing here and letting us know that we’re on the right track. That kind of reassurance and support makes it that much easier to go full steam ahead in trying new things. 

The effect that sending and receiving recognition from everyone across the organization, regardless of location, has had on building camaraderie and an infrastructure of support throughout the business has been absolutely invaluable.

 Name: Mike Dirrane
 Type of   Recognition: 1. Monetary award
2. Peer-to-peer, values-based eCards
 Joined RG: December 11, 2017

On my two year anniversary, I received a monetary award from my teammate with an extremely nice note attached. It made me feel very happy and recognized for my hard work and contributions these past two years. I chose to redeem my award on new basketball sneakers from Champs Sports and I’m very excited to try them out next time I step on the court. 


In addition to the monetary award, I received a non-monetary recognition moment from my boss with the “We own it” value attached to it. I was so thrilled when I opened it and read what she wrote. She recognized the hard work I have been putting in recently and touched on specific things I was doing well so I know what desirable behavior looks like. Getting a recognition moment like that makes me want to do even better and work harder. 

The only better feeling than receiving recognition is sending recognition and knowing how awesome it makes one of my colleagues feel. I know how much it means to all of us and it drives home the fantastic culture of appreciation that we have at Reward Gateway.

Don’t wait until 2020 to start building a culture of appreciation. There are plenty of things you can do right now to make your people feel valued and appreciated so that you can begin to transform your culture and improve employee motivation. Looking to implement your own reward and recognition tools? Get in touch with one of our employee engagement specialists today and kick off your recognition journey.

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Meghan Barrett

Meghan Barrett is a Content Marketing Manager at Reward Gateway. Outside of writing about employee engagement, she spends her time capturing sunsets with her camera, making a mess in the kitchen and relaxing in local cafes while eating chocolate croissants.

Content Marketing Manager

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