Keep Your Team Highly Engaged and High Performing with this One Key Idea

Stacey Ashley Blog

Keep Your Team Highly Engaged and High Performing with this One Key Idea

I recently shared some news that was very exciting for me. A bit of a milestone that I achieved, which was to gain my CSP. This is a Certified Speaking Professional. The highest accreditation globally within the professional speaking industry. This gave me a real sense of achievement, and I’m really proud I have gone to the effort of applying for it and making the progress.

The assessment criteria are extensive, and cover an extended period of time. And then as a speaker, you are also independently assessed by three other people who have already achieved this level of excellence so the standard is maintained.

I am excited and the reason I shared this news was that when you put a lot of effort into something and you get that effort recognised, it’s nice. it feels good. It creates a celebration and a feeling of being valued.

What is important about this to me is that all of the learning I’ve done, the practise I’ve done, the long-term commitment, has been rewarded. Only about 10% of professional speakers actually achieve a CSP. So I feel really proud to be part of this elite group. I look at other speakers and I’m just wowed by how incredibly impressive they are. But for me to be recognised in this group is a really powerful thing.

I know there are  many people, like me, who do enjoy being recognised for their efforts and contribution. And if that does not happen it can be disappointing, frustrating, a real let down that your effort has gone unnoticed or is not valued.

Which is why I believe that it is important to mark these milestones, and to celebrate them.

“Nothing else can quite substitute for a few well-chosen, well-timed, sincere words of praise. They’re absolutely free and worth a fortune.” 

Sam Walton, Founder of Walmart

Leaders can make a huge difference to their people in this space. Simply noticing effort and contribution, observing progress, recognising, and valuing what your people have to offer and the part they play.With talent shortages, the Great Re-evaluation, the focus on employee experience and the changing face of work, something as simple as a thank you can make all the difference.In their 2020 research, Quantum Workplace found that when employees believe they will be recognised, they are 2.7x more likely to be highly engaged.Here are a few other benefits of employee recognition they noted:

  • Increased productivity and engagement
  • Decreased employee turnover
  • Greater employee satisfaction and enjoyment of work
  • Improved team culture
  • Higher loyalty and satisfaction scores from customers
  • Increased retention of quality employees
  • Decreased stress and absenteeism

Think about where you and your team member currently sit in the Effort & Recognition framework. How do they ‘feel’ and what do they ‘need’ to do. The objective is for everybody to be spending more time in the top right quadrant of Effort & Recognition. The place where they feel appreciated and can celebrate their contribution, progress, and achievements. And you can help them to do this.


If someone isn’t yet putting the effort in, how can you help them to activate and start contributing, or to live up to what they are capable of? If you have people who are making a contribution and perhaps not getting the recognition they should be, then you can impact this. Notice the effort and contribution and advocate for this person.

Sometimes, it might be you who isn’t getting noticed so you need to advocate for yourself. You can help other people recognise the difference you make.

Consider where you and your team members have put the effort in that you need to recognise yourself or gain recognition because it’s important to mark those milestones to celebrate them and to create the renewal that allows you all to go on and do the next big thing.


I’d love to know your thoughts.

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