Managing Perception

Being fair is critical to offering respectful, meaningful recognition. Equally important is the perception that recognition is fair.

It is human nature to compare and recognition is no exception. People will look at the recognition they receive and hold it up to the recognition that others are getting.

As the giver, you need to be aware of the types of recognition that receive the greatest scrutiny. Consider both visibility and value of any rewards. The more public the recognition, the more desired the recognition, the more carefully you need to manage perception.

To manage perception you need to set two expectations:

Performance will be awarded.
The more impressive the performance the more desirable the award. Performance criteria should be obvious to all. Don’t keep your recognition criteria a secret.

Comparison is futile.
Employees should know that fair does not mean identical. Set the expectation that each person will receive the rewards that are best suited to their preferences.

Copyright 2007 Cindy Ventrice


My name is Cindy Ventrice. I am the author of the best-selling book Make Their Day! Employee Recognition That Works and the companion guide Recognition Strategies That Work.

My work has been quoted in The New York Times, Alaska Airlines Magazine, Workforce Magazine, and Tim Sanders' book The Likeability Factor.

Visit my website today!

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