Like so many modern businesses, our team at Double the Donation has had to navigate the same obstacles of adapting to rapid industry changes, growing a business in times of economic uncertainty, and building a positive work culture while adapting to a hybrid work environment.
Fortunately, we’re proud to announce we’ve more than exceeded on all of these fronts, and we want to pull back the curtain a bit to share our secret to forging a reliable, loyal, and engaged team: peer-to-peer recognition.
How Double the Donation Uses Peer-to-Peer Recognition
In 2020, our business went remote and then eventually transitioned to a hybrid environment. During this time, we also made leaps and bounds in expanding our team and exploring new ways we could improve our products and customer experience.
But there was a question: how could we make new employees feel like a part of the Double the Donation team when they only see their co-workers for a few minutes a day online? And what about maintaining relationships with employees hired previously?
The answer? Peer-to-peer recognition.
With a peer-to-peer recognition strategy, all team members have the power to reach out to and appreciate each other for a job well done. Plus, with our use of eCards and public appreciation, we made sure everyone gets the recognition they deserve immediately while also sharing their accomplishments with the whole team.
Here’s how we did it:
Use eCards that highlight specific company values.
eCards are the perfect format for reinforcing the values we want to instill in our team. After partnering with the eCard platform eCardWidget, we created a series of eCards that highlight the behaviors we want to encourage in our team:
When employees send an eCard, they can choose between eight designs, each representing one of our values. This helps guide them in sending meaningful eCards to one another, creating a cohesive peer-to-peer recognition system.
Through eCards, we regularly reinforce our values at Double the Donation and celebrate employees following them, encouraging more employees to follow suit. With this strategy, we have cultivated a team that treats clients respectfully, acts with urgency, is open to new ideas, and constantly strives to improve.
Employees add their custom messages.
After choosing what value to recognize a fellow employee for, our team members just click on the eCard they want to use and fill it out.
Along with recognizing a specific value, employees add a personal message. Though this is optional, we highly encourage employees to share the specific actions the team member they’re recognizing took. This way, the employee being recognized knows exactly what they did that was appreciated and will be motivated to continue doing it into the future.
Also, notice the checkboxes right above the button to send the eCard. We make sure all eCards have a copy sent to our leadership and team administrators. This ensures leadership is aware of the positive actions employees take every day and allows us to take our next step in appreciating our team.
eCards are presented at all-hands meetings.
Once a month, we host an all-hands meeting. This meeting goes over various business updates from each team and ends by sharing our “Bravo Board,” which is a series of virtual slides showing some of the best eCards sent that month.
This strategy ensures that everyone at the Double the Donation is aware of the good work the entire team is doing. For team members who work in different departments or entirely from home, this gives them a glimpse into what other team members are doing and how important their work is.
Plus, publicly recognizing team members creates the best kind of feedback loop. Employees who want to be recognized will work harder to go above and beyond to get recognized, and employees who see how happy their peers are about being appreciated will continue to recognize even more team members. Everyone works harder, and everyone gets appreciated!
How Peer-to-Peer Recognition Has Impacted Double the Donation
It’s easy to get disconnected when you only see your co-workers in person a few times a day. But we’ve found that peer-to-peer recognition fills in the gaps. Team members are always on the lookout for ways they can help others and take extra notice of the ways others help them.
Since implementing our new peer-to-peer recognition strategy, Double the Donation has seen:
- A 25% increase in overall employee engagement, with a significant rise in inter-team interactions.
- Employees send out an average of 50 eCards per month, demonstrating how eCards have energized a vibrant culture of peer-to-peer recognition.
- 95% of employees have recognized another team member or been recognized themselves via the eCard program.
But numbers are only one way to measure the impact peer-to-peer recognition has had. Double the Donation’s president Adam Weinger had this to say about the improvements the company’s seen since adopting our new strategy:
We strongly believe in our company values and always want to celebrate employees who follow them, especially when it means going the extra mile. Our peer-to-peer recognition strategy has given us one more avenue to share our values with the entire team and discuss how much of a difference following them makes for our business.
Adam Weinger, Founder and President
It’s not just leadership who appreciates this approach to peer-to-peer recognition, either.
It might sound like an exaggeration, but the eCards and Bravo Board system really give a bird’s eye perspective of the whole team. I get to see what the sales team is doing, what’s happening in customer success, the amazing stuff the product development team has made. Even on my own team, it’s great making sure everyone gets recognized, and it really brings us together.
Julia Beltran, Partnerships Manager
Everyone being able to shout out the great work they see others doing really emphasizes that we are a team. It can be easy to get competitive when it comes to sales, and seeing all the ways everyone has contributed shows how we rely on each other and are all working toward the same goal. At Double the Donation, we have a value of supporting high performers and creating a culture where they feel empowered to do their best work, and our peer-to-peer recognition program helps us do just that.
Sydney Faye Williams, Manager of Sales
Takeaways from Double the Donation
At Double the Donation, we know our team is one of our most important assets. We appreciate them, and we’ve given them the tools to appreciate each other.
We’re proud of the work we’ve done to build a supportive, high-performing team and plan to continue finding new ways to strengthen our work environment now and into the future.