It’s Awards Time!

In honor of this week’s academy awards, I wanted to spend some time thinking about what awards could be given out at a truly civil and functional workplace.

  • Best Supporting Co-worker: given to the employee who is always willing to lend a hand to co-workers to get them through a tough stretch.
  • Best Actor in a Comedic Role: goes to the person whose sense of humor raises the spirits of the group without crossing the line into offensive or inappropriate behavior.
  • Best Presenter: At the Oscars the winners get all the glory but in the workplace we can honor the person who best gives praise and accolades to others!
  • Best Listener: this award goes to the person who is best able to hear the hopes, dreams, and concerns of his co-workers.
  • Best Leader: Not to be confused with best boss, the best leader is the person who helps bring the group to the next level through their words and their actions.
  • The Rising Tides Lift All Ships Award: given to the employee who is best able to translate individual success into a success for the whole group.

What other awards would you give out?


  1. Dear Dr. Leiter:

    It seems to me a great idea those awards you propose to give to people in the workplace. We had a problem in giving the “The employee of the month” because people think that, in our specific work environment, it is only a way to legitimate favoritism. But when you state those awards are not only to personal characteristics but how they are shared them with the group, it takes another sense. I’ll propose this change of focus in my institution, Thank you.
    A couple of years ago, we disscused about the “loyalty award”. Directors wanted to give it to the employee who never said “no” to their commands and alwas gave the reason to the boss. We arged that the loyalty sometimes could critizise boss decisions in order to improve the relationship between boss and workteam, but the loyal employee arises in times of trouble, supporting. The one who always says “yes” tries to be in the safer place meanwhile, and then returns to his routine. So I propose the “True loyalty award”

  2. Heriberto
    I’m glad you found the post useful. Awards reflect the values of the organization but can also help to develop those values in a new direction. By focusing awards on the workgroup level, the event emphasizes teamwork rather than individual competitiveness. Also, awards that reflect input from peers have less of the taint of favoritism. Some things should not be left to the boss.

Leave a Reply