I like attention. Perhaps a little too much at times. I have never seen a karaoke stage I didn’t want to perform on. Of course, I use the word “perform” loosely. Though, what I lack in talent, I make up for in enthusiasm.

Now I realize that most people are unlike me. They would do whatever they can to avoid being given a microphone to sing “Don’t Stop Believing” by Journey. But I also know the vast majority of people like positive reinforcement. They like to be recognized by their bosses — and not in a closed-door meeting with just the two of them. Employees want their peers to witness their accolades.

It’s awards season here at The NEWS. We recently opened up our Best Contractor to Work For contest, which encourages employees to honor their companies based on their outstanding qualities. I encourage our readers to check it out.

The NEWS also recently honored four outstanding industry leaders via our Best Instructor and Trainer Awards.

This year, at Service World Expo, we launched The NEWS’ Legends of HVACR Awards. The inaugural winners were contractors Butch Welsch and Larry Taylor along with Emerson’s Karl Zellmer. For me, this was great because, in addition to recognizing a group of people I truly respect and admire, the excitement the winners showed while they received the awards made it worthwhile. All three were deeply moved to be considered “legends” of the industry, even though it is fairly evident to all in the HVAC world they are each worthy of such an honor.

Employee Recognition

Let’s talk about your employees now. How do you recognize their accomplishments? Is it done sporadically in a back office or just when it is review time? If so, you need to make an adjustment. Here are some ideas on ways to recognize people on your staff doing a great job:

  • Install a brag board in the office. I am sure there is a whiteboard somewhere that is not being used. Start using it to recognize your employees by writing down the good work they are doing. Did they stay late to make sure that last call got done or perhaps a homeowner emailed in to say how great the tech was on an installation — write it on the board.

Employees will cherish the recognition that goes along with everyone in the office knowing that they have done a good job.

  • Maybe create your own Hall of Fame. Perhaps it is an employee of the month or an honor you give out annually. But take a wall in your business to recognize more long-term and career contributions to your company. Frame a picture of the employees receiving such recognition, and hang it up. The employees being recognized will appreciate the gesture, and it will give those not yet recognized something to shoot for.
  • Does your company deploy a newsletter or e-blast? If so, make sure you include a section where you recognize the accomplishments of your staff. This way, in addition to all of their coworkers being aware, they can share this recognition with their families and friends if they so choose.

These are all fairly simple ideas that can be implemented in your business. By no means do you need to carry out each and every one of these, just make sure you are recognizing your employees on a regular basis and that those recognitions are sometimes public.

And if you are at an HVAC industry event and happen to see me at the local karaoke bar, come up on stage with me. I always need help belting out some Bachman-Turner Overdrive.