Baudville and The Art of Back Patting

by The Red Recruiter on August 7, 2009

Picture 607Most everyone likes to know that they are appreciated. Your kids, family members, neighbors… a simple and sincere compliment can often times help in building better relationships. I’m not an advocate for making up compliments just for the sake of doing it – that would be counterproductive in the long-run. What I’m talking about is simply taking the time out to recognize people around you when they do something that makes you happy. Simple, right?

So, how does this apply to work?

Well, we spend a pretty good amount of time working. In fact, if you take the amount of hours that you are around your co-workers as compared to your family, friends and neighbors… you are very likely balancing your life between the two realms. So, just as it would apply to your home life, making an effort to recognize others can and should build goodwill at work. So, why don’t more people do it? Great question! This could be

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a late night television list…

  1. I’m too busy to worry about that stuff.
  2. We are here to do our jobs.
  3. We are adults, we don’t need special attention.
  4. I gave him/her a raise – doesn’t that show I care?
  5. I rated him/her high on their review.
  6. It’s not really our culture.
  7. I’m not into all that fluffy stuff.
  8. Gold stars are so Jr. High!
  9. They already know that I think they do good work.
  10. We save our recognition awards for the monthly ceremony (wooop teee dooo!)

A SHRM Conference “Stand Out”

This was my first year attending the annual SHRM conference. Press pass in hand, I wandered around looking for interesting things to write about. I had been approached by at least 75 different companies to do an interview with their various experts – I wasn’t interested in that route. I was hell-bent to find something different, interesting… something that made me sit back and say, “That’s going to matter!” I found that in a company out of Michigan called Baudville.

To me, this was the diamond in the ruff I had been looking for. You see, I wanted to share information about the SHRM conference through blogging and tweeting, but talking about hundreds of vendors really didn’t seem all that enticing. The true interest, for me, was in finding a company with a fresh message, a staff that actually liked what they were doing and, last but not least, a keyhole to the “most interesting” for those of you who weren’t able to make it. You are coming next year, right?

Baudville does something that other companies do. They specialize in providing tools necessary for recognizing your employees. Not a big deal in itself. What is a big deal is the way that they present it and the how they encourage workplaces to be better.

In my conversation with Brad Darooge, CEO of Baudville, he made a comment that I had to write down. “Recognition is just a word. Ultimately, what we are trying to do is improve the relationships between companies and their workers.” From a different person, I would have taken this as a canned response… but, Brad is not just saying it. Baudville is pushing to change the way we exist at work. Watch this.

So, the question turns to “How?”

Through the use of funny, ice-breaking, artistic and cost-effective tokens of appreciation, Baudville is giving managers the ability to do more in a way that stands out. Recognition should not be complex… it should be commonplace and easy to deliver. It does not require a monthly meeting or a special ceremony. It requires a sincere attitude and the understanding that people work for people, not companies. If you disagree on that point, I invite you to sit with me for a day while I recruit people away from some of the “Best Places To Work.” Come see… it’ll be fun!

Stephanie Lloyd wrote a great piece the other day on how our current economy is breeding a very dangerous situation for companies. The delusion that paying less and getting more will last for any substantial amount of time is deconstructed with a powerful argument by Stephanie.

Losing great people isn’t cheap. If giving them a small pat on the back could change that situation and save your company money, you may want to consider a more robust recognition program. Baudville, in my opinion, is positioned very well to be a part of that growing need as we move forward into some pretty turbulent times in the area of retention.

Here is a list of some Baudville employees out on Twitter:

Brad Darooge – CEO

Kristy Sherland – VP of Product Development

Lilly Maric – Product Art Manager

Cori Curtis – PR Coordinator

Cindy Gilman – HR Manager

How are you recognizing your employees? Have you seen anything truly innovative in a while? Share your thoughts!

Disclaimer: I was not compensated by Baudville in any way to write this post. I chose them because I was impressed. Their product, their people and their forward-looking approach left me feeling compelled to share more about this great organization.

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  • Cori

    Thanks for the nice write up, Michael! We posted a link to the post on our blog and gave a shout out to your Red Shoe Project, too. We hope to work with you again in the future!

  • Cori

    Thanks for the nice write up, Michael! We posted a link to the post on our blog and gave a shout out to your Red Shoe Project, too. We hope to work with you again in the future!

  • The Red Recruiter

    My pleasure Cori! You guys/gals are doing great stuff up there! Keep up the excellent work!

  • The Red Recruiter

    My pleasure Cori! You guys/gals are doing great stuff up there! Keep up the excellent work!

  • Anne Maxon

    Good article! I like Baudville, too. As a Sales Manager here in Greensboro, North Carolina, I use a lot, also. Especially now with their new Design Your Inspiration line: customizable, personalizable Definitely worth a look. Thanks for your great blog. It's a favorite. Anne

  • earl the wood plaque

    I would like to quote a special paragraph I found from trophies2go; “A quality trophy, award or recognition marks its value to the recipient by making sure that he or she understands the essence of winning the said prize. The token of appreciation motivates the receiver to push more and excel again after getting the citation.”
    We call this one the rewarding philosophy, but I think it is very effective.

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