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In long-term care it is increasingly apparent that who is on shift is just as important as how many staff are on shift. Quality care is difficult to achieve when we do not routinely engage with one another in a positive, or civil, manner.
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WorkSafeBC’s healthcare and social services planned inspection initiative focuses on high-risk activities in the workplace that lead to serious injuries and time-loss claims.
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WorkSafeBC is releasing a discussion paper with proposed amendments to the Current Rehabilitation Services and Claims Manual that guide wage rate decisions related to short-term and long-term disability compensation. Recommended amendments include: These changes may affect your claims costs. Click here to view the proposed changes and offer feedback to WorkSafeBC – The deadline is 4:30 p.m. on Friday, […]
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Unpacking the importance of workplace recognition: Understanding the bigger picture 

May 24, 2024

Why does recognition matter? 

Recognition is essential when work is demanding and emotionally challenging. When faced with complex situations, appreciation can serve as motivation and encouragement to endure. 

How does recognition psychologically affect us?  

Understanding the psychological effects of recognition is essential in the workplace, as it directly impacts employee motivation and satisfaction. According to American psychologist Abraham Maslow's hierarchy of needs (2024), recognition is crucial in fulfilling human needs and driving behaviour. 

When employees receive acknowledgment for their contributions, the brain releases dopamine, a neurotransmitter associated with pleasure and reward. This positive reinforcement helps reduce worker stress and burnout, improving job satisfaction and increasing retention rates. 

In short, acknowledgment meets a basic human need. It boosts people's sense of purpose, work ethic, and enthusiasm for their jobs. 

How many different forms of recognition are there? 

Recognition can take various forms – and must be tailored to individual preferences to feel meaningful. The options below are a few different ways of beginning the recognition trend:   

  1. Verbally acknowledging and praising during team meetings or one-on-one conversations. 
  1. Writing personalized thank-you notes or emails emphasizing gratitude and achievements. 
  1. Rewarding through bonuses, gift cards, or small tokens of appreciation.  

What are some barriers to creating recognition programs? 

  • High workloads can make it challenging to prioritize recognition efforts. 
  • Budget constraints may restrict the availability of incentives. 
  • Lack of leadership support hinders recognition efforts and commitment. 

What are some best practices for recognizing workers? 

Given the importance of a customized approach to recognition, how can we effectively convey appreciation? The following tips will help ensure the message resonates appropriately: 

  1. Be timely: Offer recognition promptly.  
  1. Be specific: Provide detailed feedback on what employees did well and why it was important. 
  1. Be sincere: Offer genuine praise from a place of authenticity. 
  1. Be inclusive: Recognize contributions from all levels of the organization, not just top performers. 

Case studies:  

Here are two organizations that have successfully implemented impactful recognition programs: 

  • BC Care Providers Association (BCCPA) honours exemplary caregivers and teams within the long-term care sector, such as the Excellence in Care Awards or province-wide recognition campaigns, such as "Caregiver Appreciation Week," featuring social media spotlights, testimonials, and special events to honour caregivers across British Columbia. 
  • The Canadian Association of Long-Term Care Nurses hosts virtual recognition events and peer appreciation initiatives to honour long-term care nurses' hard work and resilience across Canada. 

These case studies show how organizations can build a work culture that empowers the workplace through recognition and reward. Recognition is not only a gesture; it is a vital part of developing a healthy and empathetic culture. Effective recognition programs promote employee engagement and safety, supporting progress toward a happier workplace. 

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