The Most Recognized Employees Reveal the Secrets to Happiness

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YouEarnedIt’s inaugural Top Ten Most Recognized Employees from American and Australia share their secrets to turn employees from average to exceptional

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Selected from a database of more than 100,000 individuals, YouEarnedIt’s top ten most recognized employees have provided invaluable turnkey advice for organizations to maintain engagement, retain high performers, and differentiate their employer brand in the war for talent. The elite group of winners was determined by the total amount of recognition they received from a peer, manager or company executive since January 2016 on the YouEarnedIt platform.

Employee engagement comes in countless forms, but when designed for employees, has intentional and trickle-down impacts on organizational operations success. Happy employees are high-performing powerhouses. Copy editor at Merkle Inc., Veronica Moul, trades heels for Birkenstocks at the advertising agency’s casual office environment, while Shawn Viduranga of finance company The Motley Fool, is “pumped to come to work every day” after the company allowed him to create a Batman-themed room for a quiet workspace. While these playful solutions are unique to each brand, happy employees most appreciate collaboration and peer-to-peer recognition.

The winners gave additional insight about the traits and skills that make great employees, which is essential knowledge for recruiting employees that align with the culture and objectives of an organization. Universally, winners associated great employees with their ability to effectively connect and communicate with peers and managers. Sony Australia's Dan Byrne, a logistical coordinator, stated that greatness exists in all employees, and is best harnessed by teamwork. Teamwork and positivity topped the list of what makes great employees, and each winner had anecdotes and advice that demonstrated how to cultivate each.

Each winner provided unique reasons as to why their employer offers a meaningful and motivating work environment. Perks like onsite potlucks make MedSpring Urgent Care a great place to work according to Medical Staff Scheduler, Natasha Bhimji, and it doesn’t hurt that employees like server Joy Tanjuakio at Karl Strauss Brewing Company are awarded free beer at the end of a hectic shift. Commodities aside, Bhimji, Tanjuakio, and the eight additional winners agree that rewards are most impactful when they touch emotions such as giving back, professional development, and generally having fun.

Finally, each winner gave at least three pieces of advice for other organizations to boost employee engagement and create a great place to work. Each emphasized that efforts must focus on the individual employee, and that good managers invested in their employees are essential to bring them together as a team proud of its work and organization. Leadership will be struck by the detail and insight of what makes employee engagement successful, and it’s all accessible in YouEarnedIt’s newest ebook, available for free download here.

Working with hundreds of companies and seeing feedback from tens of thousands of employees gives YouEarnedIt a unique perspective into workplace culture. The Top 10 Most Recognized Employees puts faces to these numbers, giving a personal perspective on the companies that empower their employees to be inspired, engaged and happy.

“Too often, managers listen to other managers and executives, but are not seeking the opinions of those most valuable to the company — the employees,” said Autumn Manning, co-founder, and CEO of YouEarnedIt. “Opening the conversation to this superb pool of employees can give owners and managers a fresh perspective on what it takes to truly be successful in terms of employee engagement.”

Representing the top .01% of recognized employees in the database, this list awards individuals for their exemplary efforts in the workplace. It’s the first time elite employees from retail, hospitality, finance, healthcare, advertising and media, transportation and technology industries share bottom-up advice on how to master employee engagement. These visionaries vary in job title/rank, years with the company, and includes both Gen X and Gen Y.

The Top Ten Most Recognized Employees of 2016 are:

  • Natasha Bhimji, Medical Staff Scheduler at MedSpring Urgent Care
  • Dan Byrne, Logistics Co-coordinator at Sony Australia
  • Joy Tanjuakio, server at Karl Strauss Brewing Company
  • Veronica Moul, copy editor at Merkle Inc.
  • Emily Concannon, Member Services Manager, U.S. at Car2Go
  • Katie Nelson, Delivery Office Supervisor at Big Sandy Superstores
  • Michael Carubba, Help Desk Technician at Fidelity Bank
  • Sonal Mehta, People Generalist at Return Path
  • Shawn Viduranga, Batman at The Motley Fool
  • Jason Alcantara, Client Services Manager at Equinix

Visit YouEarnedIt’s website to read the most recognized employee’s advice and insight.

About YouEarnedIt:
YouEarnedIt is a SaaS HR technology platform that redefines the way companies engage with their employees. By providing tools to connect, reward, reveal and report in real-time, YouEarnedIt is able to consolidate employee engagement initiatives into one, easy to use mobile platform for teams of all sizes. Since launching in 2012, YouEarnedIt has delivered its flexible software to small enterprises and Fortune 500 brands across several industries. Visit for more information or to schedule a demo.

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Constance Aguilar
The Abbi Agency
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