8th Annual Motivation Masters Award Finalists: Recognition, Loyalty, and Engagement

Positive attention. It's the one thing that everyone craves, no matter what demographic they may fall into. Programs that reward loyalty, recognize achievement, and just generally let an audience know that you want to have a relationship with them satisfy a universal need. Here are three programs that met that need well.

1. American Honda Motor Co., Inc./BI Worldwide
Dec. 10, 2014 to Jan. 10, 2016

The Torrance, CA-based American Honda Motor Co., Inc. engaged BI Worldwide to develop The Honda Way program, aimed at elevating its overall corporate culture and embracing the company's rich heritage (including the impact of Soichiro Honda and his innovative thinking). Employees participated in a one-day session that told the Honda narrative -- from its first motorcycle to the new jet -- in an experiential way, and provided actionable insights for thriving in the future. In July 2015, The Honda Way was enhanced with Applause, a points-based peer-to-peer recognition program; and in August 2016, Honda extended the original experiential model to its dealers.

A pulse survey, to which associates replied before and after the launch of Applause, found significant engagement from participants, indicating over 75 percent agreement on overall alignment across eight areas. This represented a 3.3 percent improvement in responses over the original survey.

2. Aristocrat Technologies Australia Pty Limited/Power2Motivate
January 2015 to December 2015

New South Wales-based gaming technology company Aristocrat Technologies Australia Pty Limited engaged Power2Motivate to develop a peer-to-peer employee recognition program that would increase the number of nominations put before managers. Power2Motivate created Winning Ways, a points program modeled on Aristocrat's company values (Respect, Courage, Integrity, Passion), with rewards ranging from the latest gadgets to travel incentives. Built on a cloud-based SaaS system, Winning Ways allows employees to access its web portals at any time via computer, tablet, or mobile device.

Thanks to Winning Ways, reward points issued for 2015 (76,278,172) nearly doubled over those issued in 2014 (39,379,717). As a result, 8,862 awards were approved in 2015 compared to the 2,555 approved awards in the previous year -- a 346 percent increase. Point redemptions increased 174 percent. The Winning Ways program has since been expanded globally to include the U.S., Australia, New Zealand, and the U.K.

3. The Hershey Company/Globoforce
May 2014 to present

When famous candymaker Hershey discovered a decline in employee recognition, the company turned to Globoforce to reinvigorate its culture of recognition through one comprehensive global platform. Open to all employees across the globe in multiple languages, the points-based Hershey SMILES program offers rewards through six award levels redeemable for thousands of merchandise and gift card options. Employees can send their peers "SMILES" (recognition rewards) in a number of formats -- digital, mobile, or physical paper.

Hershey SMILES achieved 100 percent recognition across the organization within its first year. Within the first seven months, employee satisfaction with rewards and recognition increased by 11 percent; after one year, more than 50,000 SMILES were awarded, with 68 percent of those recognitions coming from company leaders. To date, more than 130,000 SMILES have been awarded to employees and Hershey is currently building a roadmap to include all recognition activities in Hershey SMILES, including well-being initiatives, awards for field sales employees, service awards, and SMILES life changes.