From Teddy Bears to Ready Cash, Employee Recognition Program Offers Many Ways to Say Thanks

Posted: January 31, 2007 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

By Dave Andrews

George Mason University is known as a warm and welcoming place to work – and part of that reputation is due to the multiple recognition programs available through Human Resources and Payroll.

HR would like to be able to name every staff member Employee of the Month. However, there aren’t enough months in the year to award each deserving Mason employee. For this reason, HR provides faculty and staff with a variety of ways to recognize the exceptional work of their employees or co-workers.

Headlining the programs this season is the new “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” half-day-off leave. Now through Feb. 28, classified employees with at least a “solid achiever” performance evaluation and no more than five days of recognition leave are eligible to take an afternoon off. The process is easy: their department head can authorize the leave by e-mailing, faxing, or mailing the names and G numbers of those who have earned the time off to Lucy Cummings, reward and recognition coordinator for HR.

“We’re always trying to come up with new and creative ways for Mason employees to show thanks to one another,” says Cummings. “The [employee recognition] program offers something for everyone, from small thank-yous to significant awards.”

Among the many other ways to show appreciation are chocolate bars, gasoline cards and Home Depot and Outback Steakhouse gift certificates. Awards can be gifted in the form of teddy bears, umbrellas and even socks. Even the most traditional of gestures, thank-you cards, are available.

The program also runs two awards ceremonies – one in the winter and another in the spring – where a wide array of competitive awards are given out. All are highly regarded and carry monetary value. The next award presentation will be at 2 p.m. on Thursday, March 8.

For a full list of active recognition programs, visit the HR web site. Those who wish to nominate an employee or supervisor can contact Cummings by phone at 703-993-2739 or via e-mail.

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