How to Create an Engaging Work Culture

Appreciation is no longer an HR checkbox that organizations can give out sparingly. Building a culture of appreciation has become integral to any organization’s bottom line. Undeniably, employee recognition and appreciation build relationships with peers and leaders, helping employees feel connected to the organization’s purpose and creating joyous moments for employees, all of which build a culture that helps your employees thrive within the organization for a sustainable business.

Recognition & Appreciation: Understanding the Differences

Although most people use the terms recognition and appreciation interchangeably, they have different meanings. Distinguishing between the two is vital for your employees and ensuring they truly feel valued.

While recognition calls specific attention to something special or well done, appreciation deals with feelings and expression.


Recognizing your employees demands a substantial show of praise. Some moments when recognition supersedes simple appreciation involve:

  • Employment milestones
  • Earning distinguished awards
  • Earning specific achievements
  • Loyalty and dedication
  • Outstanding performance
  • The employee of the month


Praising your employees must be an everyday experience, and showing them proper appreciation should happen. Sometimes though, there are stand-out moments that deserve special appreciation, such as

  • Going above or beyond the norm
  • Notable skill sets
  • Leading by example
  • Gratitude for an excellent job
  • Completing a tough task

When your organization receives an accomplishment that shines above all others, when a unique set of employee skills gets your organization a new client, or when your team wraps up an exhausting task, your employees must get extra appreciation. However, now and then, it is an excellent idea to show gratitude for no particular reason. When your entire staff is present, working hard, and showing up on time, give them a little something to remind them that you appreciate their excellent attitudes.

Incorporating Recognition & Appreciation to Foster Engaging Work Culture

Enlisted are effective ways to help you build an engaging organizational culture that your employees will love.

Celebrating milestones

Milestones can include anything from completing a challenging project to achieving significant years of service for an organization. Irrespective of how significant a milestone is, organizational leaders must achieve every milestone. When you do so, your employee feels motivated and feels a sense of purpose, which makes them see a future with the organization.

Thoughtful rewards for your employees

A culture of recognition and appreciation goes beyond acknowledging your employees. Sometimes you must reward your employees that have a significant impact. Focus on the value-based rewards that you can give frequently and promptly. Besides, leaders must be thoughtful about the rewards they are giving their employees. A well-designed recognition program boosts employee performance by 11.1%. You can also customize and personalize the rewards, driving more employee satisfaction and minimizing the chance of attrition.

Encourage peer-to-peer recognition

Praising your employees is never a one-way path from managers to subordinates. Employees can also thank their coworkers for their efforts and assistance. When employees give positive feedback to their coworkers, the managers and other organizational leaders spot high-performing employees, especially those who go unnoticed. It improves your organizational culture leading to improved employee engagement.

Create awards exclusive to your organization

Promoting healthy competition and effective recognition practices engages your employees. You can start creating a comprehensive set of prizes covering all the areas where you would like to recognize your employees.

Incorporating gratitude into leadership

Leaders within your organization guide individuals and teams toward the goals. However, with the stress and anxiety of being reactive to the dynamic business landscape, leaders often have time to appreciate their team and subordinates. The condition further exacerbates due to a lack of trust among employees in the management. The leaders must strengthen employee morale and trust through gratitude debriefing sessions after project completion and actively appreciating everyone for their contribution.

Highlight the best qualities of individuals

Building a culture of employee appreciation remains incomplete unless you highlight your employees. Appreciating the best qualities of your employees is one of the best ways to bring out the best in the person. You can appreciate the seldom-recognized qualities in employees, such as honesty, admitting mistakes, and willingness to learn and change. You can also appreciate employees in a fun way, such as by playing an appreciation hot seat. Here, each employee will sit in the seat while the other team members talk about their best qualities.


As social animals, everyone loves acceptance, appreciation, and gratitude from peers and leaders. When establishing a culture of gratitude, you must start from the to-level management and pass the attitude down to the teams and individual employees. Talent Intellect is your ideal destination if you want to change your organizational culture. Talent Intellect emerged as one of the leading people advisory and consulting firms in South East Asia, offering innovative solutions and personalized support to businesses in the region.

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