Is it Better to Give Than to Receive?

December 5, 2016
| ByMike Ryan

“It is better to give than to receive.”

That age old axiom tells us that generosity has its own rewards—especially around the Holidays— and that people on the giving side experience just as much (if not more) satisfaction than those on the receiving end. In the context of employee recognition that’s true as well—especially among younger workers.

The generation who grew up connected to social technologies gets just as much out of giving recognition as they do receiving it. Don’t get me wrong. Millennials relish input just like everyone else. In fact, they want theirs more often and, when possible, in real-time. But here’s the surprise—and it’s a big one—they like to give feedback as much as they like to receive it. Research shows that younger employees rate peer-to-peer capabilities higher than just about any other aspect of a recognition program.

I guess this really shouldn’t shock anyone. Think about it. Millennials grew up connected to social media and they still use it to share what they are doing and what they’re accomplishing. So why wouldn’t that same mentality carry over into the workplace? Why wouldn’t they want to be connected with coworkers and colleagues so they can share their successes?

Millennials are the largest workplace cohort out there and they are a generation wired for social recognition. Give that gift to them and you will receive more in return—including all the business benefits that follow when a work force is connected and aligned.

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