Everyone Loves Recognition

It has been said that the most powerful word you can hear is your own name. When you hear someone speak your name, it has an electrifying impact on your brain and emotions. Nothing is more impactful.

When I walk around our campus, it is such a great thing when I hear someone shout out, "Hey, Shawn, how are you doing?!" Simple, yet powerful. It is the most basic form of recognition; one person recognizing another.

At Benefitfocus, we do a lot of celebrating. It is actually one of our core values. Timeless. We have impromptu celebrations for small things, big celebrations for big things. We have all sorts of monthly, quarterly and annual events. One of my favorites is our Annual Engineering Summit where we have many recognitions, one being “Benefitfocus Engineer of the Year”. It is a great event with lots of recognition.

One of my other favorite events is this week, our annual Sales Jam Conference. We bring all of our sales folks to town to kick off the New Year right! There is a ton of information to share on new products, new services, promotions and partnerships. Our fast growing business means there are always a lot of new things going on. It also means our teams are growing and there new folks coming on board. So much to communicate!

The one main thing to communicate is my appreciation for our sales and marketing folks. They do a fantastic job. I believe they are the best in our industry. This week we will celebrate an amazing 2012, new records set and goals exceeded. We will recognize individuals, teams and managers for their performance. It is so much fun to be a part of and to watch the group grow and succeed.

The success comes from a lot of long days and nights. It comes from travel, demonstrating our software and doing deep technical dives with new customers. One funny thing we started doing a few years ago is showing all sorts of random photos from our sales teams' travels. We call it "Scenes from the Road”. It is hilarious. Folks capture all kinds of great pictures from their travels over the past year. I submitted a couple myself. My favorite one this year is when I got to meet Ryan Seacrest. I cannot wait for it to pop up on the big screen!


Benefitfocus CEO Shawn Jenkins and Ryan Seacrest


So you can see that we all love to be recognized. We love to be called on stage and be recognized as the top engineer or top sales person. We want our manager to give us a high five for finishing the project on time. We want a simple shout out every now and then for some little thing we did right. And we get a quick burst of positive energy every time we hear our name spoken. It is the purest form of recognition. Simple. Powerful.

Give it a try yourself. Shout out someone's name in the office or in the parking lot today. Give them a big wave when you do it. They will get a burst and you will be recognized by them as someone who brings positive feelings. That is certainly a good person to be! And I am sure as you do, you will begin to hear your name and soon you will be up on stage as the superstar that you are!