"30% Only one-third of people received praise for their work in the last 7 days (Gallup) " written with a background picture of a desk that has a sticky note with "Good Job" written

How to say thank you

In Recognition and Engagement by Lori McKnight

Thank You

Recognize Contributions Weekly
With 3 Simple Scripts, Tips & Tools

Look at any of the Best Places to Work and Top Employer Lists and you’ll notice they have one thing in common… employees feel pride in their work and company. How do organizations achieve this? Their employees feel appreciated and believe their efforts are directly contributing to the company’s success.

Recognizing an employee for a great job is a little like coming up with an original birthday or retirement card message. It takes some thought.

Here are 3 guidelines and a few scripts to help you get started crafting messages that build a happier, more productive and engaged workforce.

1: Be specific and connect actions to the company’s values

When an employee goes above and beyond to solve a customer issue or ensure a quality deliverable, be specific and relate their actions to a core value. Organizations with clear values communicated and reinforced by all levels of leadership enjoy a stronger work culture. Relating an individual’s actions to a core company value also shows the individual and others what you expect.

New HR Technologies like CSI STARS Engagement and Performance Program allows managers and peers to recognize individual and team contributions frequently and efficiently. Online tools such as Manager-to-Peer, Peer-to-Peer, On-the-Spot and Virtual Badges give organizations a variety of ways to extend genuine appreciation at the right time and in the right way for maximum impact.

Giving specific, value-driven recognition is particularly important for Millennials who, more than other generations, expect to find “meaning” through their work – a key driver of their engagement and retention.

Thank You Script #1

Let’s say your company values Teamwork – respect, collaboration and desire for excellence are qualities implied in this core value.


Hi Ashley,
Great job on the XYZ project. I’ve heard you’re an excellent addition to the team. Your knowledge and ideas combined with a keen attention to detail have really helped improve the quality of the client solution. Your ability to collaborate with cross-functional teams working together to meet common goals directly relates to our company’s core value of teamwork. Thanks for all your help and keep up the great work!


Hi Ben,
Thanks so much for giving me a hand with the XYZ project. Your industry expertise was extremely helpful and added to the quality of the final deliverable. Thanks for taking the time out of your busy day to share your knowledge. It was much appreciated!

2: Provide feedback frequently, not just at the completion of a big project

Top employers don’t leave feedback to the yearly performance review. They encourage effort, track progress and reward actions throughout the project/year.

One way to incorporate recognition into your day is to schedule a 30-minute recurring meeting with yourself each week. Use this time to plan your recognition moments and notes. You’ll find after a few weeks, this will become part of your routine and you’ll be rewarded with a more energized, higher performing team.

That which gets measured, improves.

Today’s HR social recognition tools are quickly becoming best practice programs for incorporating recognition into your employee value proposition – measurably. Managers and staff develop results-based goals that are communicated, monitored and measured visibly from anywhere. This is particularly useful as more companies move to virtual offices and promote work from home options.

Programs like CSI STARS Metrics Manager and Leader Boards allow managers to communicate goals and measure progress so everyone can see what’s needed to stay on track. These types of programs work particularly well for company-wide goals relating to Safety and Wellness promotion.

Thank You #2

Hi Tom,
I want to say thanks and let you know how pleased I am with your progress on XYZ project. I know this has been a challenging and time-consuming role and I really appreciate all your hard work. You’ve achieved a perfect safety record this last quarter which is an incredibly important metric the company values. Thanks for your continued diligence and keep up the great work!

3: Recognize Contributions Publicly

Being publicly recognized is a big deal. Money is an important motivator but being recognized by your boss for a great job is even more motivating. Top employers do this really well. Publicly congratulating an individual for successfully completing a large project, securing a new client or exceeding a clients’ expectations demonstrates the difference they are making.

Social recognition tools such as CSI STARS News Stream allow managers to post messages and let employees add ‘peers’ to their network to be kept up-to-date with who in the organization is being recognized so they can share in the news and celebrate important milestones.

Thank You #3

Customer Feedback

Everyone at ABC is committed to our customers and works hard to ensure we listen, understand and exceed our clients’ expectations. I received feedback from a client praising our efforts and thanking one particular individual for her outstanding service.
Share the excerpt of note.

Please join me in thanking Sara Jones for making all of us look good! Way to go Sara! Keep up the great work!

New Client

Please join me in congratulating all the members of the A Team. This high performing team’s innovative approach gave us a competitive edge during the bidding process. They listened to the client’s needs, collaborated across the organization and designed an outstanding proposal, which resulted in a big win for the company. Thank you for this incredible contribution to our success.

It’s as rewarding to give, as it is to receive.

Scientists have found “acts of kindness produce the single most reliable momentary increase in wellness of any exercise tested(1).”

Why? Just as being recognized makes you feel highly valued, showing appreciation to others also makes you feel good.

While it does take a little more time to give specific, value-oriented recognition more frequently to your employees, it has a positive impact on performance, culture and engagement.

Who knows, that 30-minute self-meeting could become what you most look forward to in the week!


CSI STARS builds engagement with programs and awards that are good for your people and bottom line. CSISTARS can consolidate all your recognition programs into one easy-to-use mobile platform that managers and employees love using. We’ve been designing solutions for clients of all sizes and industries since 1979. Let us give you a hand! Visit www.csistars.com for more information or schedule a quick demo here.

Author: Lori McKnight

Lori McKnight
Lori is the VP of Recognition for CSI International Inc. She has a MBA with a minor in Human Resources, is a Certified Recognition Professional and member of the SHRM blog squad. Prior to joining CSI STARS, she worked at Mercer Human Resource Consulting and Youthography, a youth market research agency. Connect with CSI STARS on LinkedIn to learn how we cultivate a workforce that loves coming to work.

(1) Dr Martin Seligman writes in his book Flourish