Why We All Need Recognition ?

Watching the 2016 Oscars, I was reminded just how important recognition is, and the power it has to help push us forward to achieve new goals and reach new levels of performance.

Even for multimillionaires, the opportunity to be recognized in front of their peers represents the pinnacle of their careers. F Murray Abraham, who won best-actor for his role in Amadeus, said, “The Oscar is the single most important event of my career.”

In Maslow’s Hierarchy of human needs esteem ranks highly. We all want to have that sense of achievement and respect from others, and it acts as a great motivation for us.


But recognition shouldn’t just be limited to an annual event, be reserved for very best or only given on completion of a major task. It’s not some limited resource which should be preserved only used on rare occasions.

Recognition is the lubricant that oils the wheels of success and we should look to apply it liberally.

That doesn’t mean that that we should just throw it about anywhere and everywhere; recognition needs to be used in the right way at the right time.

When we see good work we should pay the compliment immediately, giving positive feedback at the time good work is done is a great motivation and will encourage the work to be repeated. It also needs to be specific too, so it’s clear what we would like to see repeated.

We shouldn’t just recognise great work either; we should look to recognize improvements and use recognition as an encouragement to keep trying and to keep improving.

We should recognise progress along the journey and not just wait until they get to the destination to cheer.

I can tell you that when I run the marathon, it’s the applause along the way that keeps me going when I start to feel like I will quit, not the promise of applause at the end.

Why not try it, start today, start to recognise people for little things because when you do that, it won’t be long before you are cheering big things.

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