How One Company Rocks In-Person, Hybrid & Virtual Recognition
by Sarah McVanel, Chief Recognition Officer, Greatness Magnified
Huge love. Heart eyes emoji. My recognition heart gets all aflutter.
i24 Call Management Solutions. Yummy scrumptious recognition-rich culture. Do you want to know why? Let me take you back a few years…
In a tiny city called Montreal (teehee), three generations ago, a strong womanpreneur started a call answering service to put food on the table. She had her phone in the kitchen, so she literally could be found stirring a pot of soup while answering the phone and tending to her kids—the original multitasker.
Fast forward a few generations (and a few decades), enter stage left, grandson Gary Blair.
Now, to know Gary is to love him. Seriously, you couldn’t meet a more likable guy. Brilliant biz mind too. (He hangs with a crew of amazing call management leaders from other organizations, too – Scott, Lina, Jessica, Laura, Dana, Paul, Jen, Lucy, Tim, Kelsey, Linda, Brad, Kristie, Adrian, Doug, and Jamey to name a few ;-] )
He has curated one of the most delicious recognition-rich cultures of belonging. Seriously, there isn’t one person I’ve met at i24 that I wouldn’t want to have over for dinner. They attract seriously yummy people.
So, I thought you might want to snack on some insights on the newest recognition practices i24 was trying to attract and retain amazing folks in an industry riddled with turnover, and I sat down to interview Gary and Ray, his partner-in-culture-crime (geez, it’s just an expression…you didn’t think I meant actual crime, did you?).
Check out the video interview below.
What we’re talking about in this article is how to hardwire recognition into hybrid and virtual contexts as well as (and possibly better) than when you were 100% bricks and mortar.
To get the complete yummy factor, check out this and next week’s article and the video; you won’t want to miss a drop of their wisdom.
I’ll hand the writing reigns to my colleague Mallory for this article. (You may have noticed that I love it when someone with fresh eyes to an interview writes the article.) Enjoy!
Ready, Set, Hybrid
by Mallory Dunbar, Learning Specialist, Greatness Magnified
i24 Call Management Solutions loved their WOW program – a peer-to-peer employee recognition program aimed to recognize the day-to-day acts of generosity. It was, and still is, a hit among employees and leaders alike. (You may remember we’ve told you about them before.)
As the workplace changed, and they moved to remote work (they had 48 hours to go from totally bricks-and-mortar to all virtual at the start of COVID), Gary and Ray quickly decided how to update WOW to align with a virtual work environment. They discovered this: the world may change, but core human needs don’t. The desire for connection was more vital than ever.
And so they set out to create a new, remote-friendly recognition program that people could get excited by. Instead of recognizing employees for what they do, they decided to recognize them for who they are.
Virtual FROGing…The Power of Digital Compliments
FROG compliment cards were not new to i24. I introduced them to it in previous conventions (such as CAM-X). When they moved to remote work, they knew they had to create a simple, easy-to-use digital recognition program to succeed. That’s where the FROG compliment cards came in.
They worked to create a place in their internal communication system where employees could select the name of the person they wished to send the compliment to, pick a compliment from the deck of 52 FROG cards in English or French and press send. Within seconds, that person will receive a compliment card straight to their inbox, letting them know who it’s from. It’s a personal, authentic, sincere and timely way to give recognition. How amazing is that?!
The Impact of Investing 30 Seconds to Give a Compliment
i24 has created an army of recruiters. They have had more new staff hired on from referrals by current employees than ever before. That means their employees are leaving work and bragging about how fantastic their company is to anyone who will hear it. They value and appreciate their job and company so much that they tell the people they care about to come and join them. (Isn’t that just the best compliment a company can receive?!)
They didn’t set out with the goal of anything beyond recognizing employees on a human level – the impact on recruitment was a bonus. By living true to their values and acknowledging and appreciating every employee, they have created a scrumptious workplace that employees are excited by. A place where they want their friends and family to be a part of.
Sometimes we think recognition is fluffy stuff. i24’s commitment to continuing to iterate recognition no matter what is thrown its way proves that recognition is a cornerstone of culture.
Want more? Spoiler alert: join us next week for more advice from Gary and Ray.
How have you ensured that your approach to recognition aligns with the world of work in your team, organization, community and even family? If we can help, reach out.
P.S. – if you need bilingual call management services, give Gary and the team at i24 a call (no pun intended). Who doesn’t want to work with an organization that rocks at culture?
Looking for more recognition-building ideas? Here are a few more: