Employee Appreciation

How To Promote Peer To Peer Recognition In The Workplace

June 14, 2022
min read

Peer-to-peer recognition is vital in all businesses. Employees thrive where they feel motivated - peer recognition helps with this. Whether it’s a spoken thank you or a gift, recognition boosts employee morale and pride.

We’re going to discuss what peer recognition means and how you can promote it in the workplace. We’ll also spend some time on why it’s so important. If you’re looking into ways to bolster employee engagement - read on! 

What Is Peer To Peer Recognition?

Peer recognition is when coworkers acknowledge and praise each other for their skills and accomplishments. 

Peer recognition is just as crucial as acknowledgment from upper management. The recognition means a lot, as colleagues are around each other all day. They know what each person puts into every task. They also know about the challenges their coworkers face and factors that potentially make their jobs harder. 

When looking at the nuts and bolts of it, recognition is essential for employee purpose and happiness. SurveyMonkey concluded that 82% of employees consider recognition a real part of their happiness in the workplace. 

If you’re on the hunt for an excellent way to improve the culture of recognition in your company, look no further! We’ve compiled a guide with everything you might need to know. 

Peer To Peer Recognition: A Handy Guide 

1. Introduce a Formal Recognition Program

Recognition programs are established to promote feedback amongst colleagues. Employees can use peer recognition programs to congratulate or thank their colleagues for their hard work. 

Start by defining the objective of the program. Are you trying to increase productivity or improve workplace satisfaction or culture? The reality is that you can use these programs to improve many aspects of your business.

The tools and methods for carrying out a peer recognition program depends on the business. A good idea is to allow for an online and an offline component. 

2. Have Managers Lead By Example 

When developing a culture of recognition, it’s a good idea to get buy-in from all levels. This ensures that everyone believes in the objectives and aims of the program. 

With this in mind, implementing a peer recognition program with support from senior employees is crucial. When senior employees partake in peer recognition, employees are more comfortable following suit. 

Management should use these programs frequently, as well as encourage participation. They should also lead by example, taking it upon themselves to note employee achievements, big or small. 

3. Involve Employees In The Program’s Inner Workings

Once employees have been signed up for the peer-to-peer recognition program, it is vital to keep them engaged. 

Every person should know how to use the program, why it was implemented, and its benefits. From there, listen to their opinions on employee rewards and any other feedback they might have on the program. 

Remember, the program should be flexible and can be changed to suit the needs of the business. 

4. Make The Program Fun 

It is beneficial to incorporate animated elements, surprises for employees, and even rewards and incentives when using recognition programs. Employee engagement will increase when there’s an element of fun in the peer recognition program. 

For the program's online component, try to include fun reactions to acknowledgments into the company culture. For example, when someone is recognized for their hard work, employees should react with celebratory GIFs or emojis. 

5. Encourage Specific Recognition

When talking about practicing recognition, encourage employees to be specific. For example, if someone delivered excellent customer service that landed a flurry of referrals, congratulate them for their expert handling of the situation. 

6. Make a Habit of Immediate and Authentic Recognition 

When recognition is handed out immediately, it builds a sense of pride. On the other hand, congratulating the employee much later does not have the same effect. It can make them feel as though their work is not seen.

Related: A Complete Guide To Employee Appreciation (quotes, activities & ideas)

Why Coworker Recognition Is Important  

Improves Efficiency And Employee Performance

Ensuring that your employees feel motivated through peer-to-peer recognition is a great place to start improving efficiency and performance. 

The impact that recognition has on efficiency and productivity is immense. Research shows that feedback from peers enhances performance by up to 14%. Also, 40% of employees will put more effort into their work if they receive recognition. 

Strengthens Team Morale

Teamwork is essential in the workplace - it allows for more collaboration and creativity. 

When workers are unhappy in their workplace, relationships with coworkers can be tough to maintain. They may feel detached because they do not feel valued, which can impact teamwork. 

But, when peers uplift one another, it strengthens team morale. Colleagues feel recognized for their efforts toward the collective goal, which brings the team together.

It boosts team spirit and encourages colleagues who do not participate as much to get involved. There is better decision-making, and projects progress faster than before.

Team morale also becomes stronger when coworkers feel respected and valued. They feel equal to each other, which creates an environment open to different perspectives.

Increases Employee Engagement

Peer-to-peer recognition drives employee engagement, which is great for company culture and business success. Gallup's research found that employees who feel connected to the workplace increase profitability and sales growth for their company.

In short, a person who feels valued and appreciated produces better outcomes and delivers outstanding customer experiences.

Boosts Business Profitability

Companies that implement recognition in the workplace are usually more successful than others and generate more profit. According to Harvard Business Review, profits can increase by 30% if peer-to-peer recognition is practiced regularly. 

Cultivates a Better Company Culture 

Peer recognition creates a collaborative work environment, which betters colleague relationships. It also creates an environment where the right behaviors are rewarded. Those who uphold the company standards and values, and go above and beyond, are acknowledged. 

When you recognize employees for acting according to the company values, it establishes a mindset to practice these values daily. 

Improves Employee Retention

A lack of recognition can lead to employees leaving their jobs. When employees feel very undervalued, there is a high chance they will look for a job elsewhere. 

On the other hand, a person is less likely to pursue new job opportunities if they are consistently recognized. People who feel valued and accepted by their peers have fewer reasons to leave.

Strengthens Trust Between Managers And Employees

Showing appreciation can work wonders in building trust in the ranks. When managers make a show of a job well done, the recipient feels proud, especially if the recognition is public. This can feed into greater job satisfaction for employees. 

If employees feel their managers are authentic in their recognition, they will be more committed to reaching company goals. 


Peer recognition programs are a great way to boost employee morale and collaboration. On the whole, they can strengthen relationships, improve productivity, and increase profitability. 

Although there are many ways to show appreciation, a recognition program is a great, structured way to ensure employees feel valued. These programs can be improved over time, as feedback is gathered from employees. 

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