Kudo wall

A retrospective meeting is helpful to learn from the pitfalls and hick-ups of the past. It enables your team to adapt its processes to changes and new paradigms. Building upon team process is useful but a solid tool without happy workers is useless.

We had a tough project for the team stability and well being last year. In our retrospective, it appeared that the most potent force of the team is the cohesion. The team praised the help that everybody receives from other team members. As a team leader, I am grateful for what the team achieved. But my strongest satisfaction is to see that despite the challenges the team member continued to help and support each other.

The kudo wall

I wanted to show them how much they rely on each other to succeed. I wanted to thanks them. I dug into Management 3.0 for advice. Management 3.0 advice that appraisal is better received when they are not coming from the hierarchy but colleagues. Peers want to genuinely wanting to reward the help they received from other colleagues.

Management 3.0 recommends to follow 6 rules:
1 — Don’t promise rewards in advance;
2 — Keep anticipated rewards small;
3 — Reward continuously, not once;
4 — Reward publicly, not privately;
5 — Reward behavior, not outcome;
6 — Reward peers, not subordinates;

Following these recommendations, I used a whiteboard to create a wall of fame presenting the names of all the team members (rule 4). I gave to each team member 2 yellow sticky notes (rule 6). I asked them to vote for there peer to reward some help they received or an attitude they appreciated (rule 5). The team members were allowed to vote secretly if they wanted, they had several days to drop there vote without being seen.

I didn’t inform them what would be the reward (rule 1). I waited for all the yellow sticky notes to be posted on the wall. I purchase a small token of appreciation, a small voucher card (rule 2) for a local mall.

When all the team members were available, I called everyone to deliver the token of appreciation, I delivered the gift card in the name of the team, not in my name. I explained that the Kudo wall will be reopened in some weeks but keeping it unplanned (rule 3).

Offering a token of appreciation in the name of the team.

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