Vermont Awards & Engraving: Tight Labor Market,Possible Recession Worries?

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Retained, Engaged Staff is More Important than EVER! and Recognition is an Essential Part of Making that Happen


First and most important is to define what recognition means to your company – there is no one-size-fits-all recognition program. The company culture and values should drive what you choose to recognize and it must be sincere. I once worked for a large bank that regularly went through programs like “Back to Basics” that had attendant recognition pieces. Everyone I knew felt they were much more manipulative than sincere. Avoid that! After twenty-three years in this business, I am happy to work with you to answer that question.


Things to recognize:


End of Probationary Period (additional hint – this maybe the best free consultation you’ll ever get – fresh eyes still but knowledge of the business)

What items are best? Something with the company logo like a mug, sweatshirt, jacket, or pin. Add in some balloons and a cake and your new hire knows they are welcome!

Annual Awards – Employee of the Year, Most Innovative, Best Team Player, Best Mentor, etc.

What items are best? A non-profit I know does really imaginative trophies that cost all of $8 each, from there we can move to plaques – wall or standing – engraved boxes, pens, etc.

Project Completion

What items are best? Depending on the size of the project a YAY! trophy works, larger projects could be a plaque with a photo of the project or the team, really important ones might call for a set of crystal glasses with the project logo or name.

Targeted Behavioral Success like error reduction, production gains, or perfect attendance.

What items are best? These don’t have to be big things and often 3D items are great. It’s amazing what we can do with trophies (other than what you are thinking!) using you logo and message. These are very affordable and I think much more appreciated than certificates.

Professional Development Milestone – earning a certification or additional degree takes dedication and hard work. To have an employee recognized and celebrated is important.

What items are best? A desk block with the new initials is a start but plaques work very well as do laminated hangings of the diploma or certificate.

Years of Service – appreciation for years of service lets the whole organization know that retention is valued and history is respected.

What items are best? Clocks, plaques, crystal, standing awards are all common.

Retirement – when someone retires from a business it is a major milestone for both. Celebrating service and recognizing change can be powerful.

What items are best? Here is where knowledge of the person and his or her likes, hobbies and future plans most important. There are so many options, humidor for the cigar aficionado, decanter and glasses for the scotch connoisseur, a crystal vase for the gardener.


Naturally not all recognition should be a tangible object – but they are very important. Items with the company logo carry great weight with employees and given the cost of logos and branding, it makes sense to use them in your recognition.


I know an executive whose company does no tangible recognition. She showed me 4 gift cards that had been riding around in her wallet for years – she said she didn’t remember what they were for. She later showed me a small clock in her office from a former employer that we made years and years ago that she still valued. Clearly a huge opportunity is being missed in this business.


There are so many possible reasons to recognize staffers, volunteers, customers and distributors – it’s all in what you care about and the options are endless. Please call, I’ll be glad to help. | 802-862-3000