How do your people graduate?

Last night my eldest daughter, Jasmine, graduated with her bachelors degree in Industrial Design from University of NSW.  For anyone that has attended a University graduation ceremony it is easy to see the traditions that have been carried forward.  The gown, the graduation caps and the procession of the individual students, their degree, awards and acknowledgement is wonderful to watch.

When a student graduates it is a rite of passage.  It symbolises the end of a specific course of study and the beginning of something new.  While I watched my daughter and the other graduates I could see a visible spring in their step as they walked with purpose and excitement about their future.

This makes me think about what many leaders and heads of HR miss across most organisations.  Everyone is always so busy that we have stopped taking the time to recognise and celebrate their achievements.  I think in the past 10-15 years with everything moving to a faster digital platform, the time to recognise people has slid out of sight, which is truly a shame.

With the faster pace of business too many staff are feeling the exhaustion as we move past the pandemic.  A recent report on the State of the Future of Work by the University of Melbourne showed that many staff are struggling with their current workload.  One of the key areas of concern is that staff are working harder and reporting greater exhaustion than pre-pandemic, with no end in sight to the daily treadmill that they feel stuck on.

By recognising the things that staff have completed and looking for ways to celebrate these achievements we can create a new rite of passage. It could be something that provides them with a sense of encouragement and energy as they shift from one project and begin starting the next one.  

Take a minute to think about the ceremonies or rites of passage that you could create in your workplace to make it a more positive place to be.  This could include celebrating the win of a new client, launching a new product to the market or recognising a new level of customer service that has been achieved.  Having a dinner, a celebration lunch, a staff movie night or something similar can make this stand out in a positive way.   A simple ceremony that offers some word of thanks and something to say we appreciate your efforts can go a long way.  

So what are you going to do to help your people graduate and celebrate their achievements? If you would like to have a complimentary discussion on some strategies you can use to help your people please click here.  For my daughter Jasmine, she is now starting a year of honours study at UNSW before she jumps into the full time workforce.