How to Choose Employee Month Fairly and Effectively

Boosting Wellbeing: An Employer's Mini-Guide

Employee of the Month” is a title that recognizes an individual’s efforts in service to your company and, with sufficient merits, can motivate all of your employees to aspire toward winning that title. However, this honor can also demotivate your employees to look upon the past year of recipients and only see one or two names. This article is all about how to optimally choose an Employee of the Month without being affected by any personal biases.

Figure Out What The Honor Stands For

Giving someone an Employee of the Month award is supposed to show that they are an example for other employees. One of the first things that any business should do before starting such a program is to assess the criteria for assessing candidates. The nature of that checklist is likely to be as variable as the number of businesses worldwide. Still, some standard notes are just to recognize an employee, advocate for employees, be most productive, etc. Once you know your criteria, you can let employees know what they need to do to have a chance at winning the acclaim.

Here are several factors you might consider when drafting your checklist:

  • Relations with other employees.
  • Attitude
  • Accomplishments
  • Judgment
  • Reliability
  • Consistent output
  • Customer interactions
  • Punctuality and attendance
  • Discipline
  • Problem-solving skills

You can then judge your employees by these metrics, rate them on a scale from 5 (Outstanding) to 1 (Subpar performance across the board), and then come to a good idea of who should be nominated by seeing the highest overall scores.


There are two ways to handle voting for Employee of the Month.

  1. Establish a committee of executives and managers from all departments to handle the nominations. This committee would meet monthly to nominate employees based on their performance within your criteria and goals established in the previous point. The committee will then discuss why a given nominee is worth the award and decide upon a winner from that discussion.
  2. Have every employee have a say in the nominations. Whoever receives the most votes wins the award. While this may be challenging in large companies, it is the most fair approach.


After the nominations have been selected, it is vital to check that everyone who was selected meets the criteria established in the first step. Be sure to assess the entire data behind these employees as it can help highlight who stands out most from their peers and is most deserving of Employee of the Month. Human Resources can confirm the merit of candidates against your criteria checklist, which can help deflect favoritism and nepotism from the C-suite. Once all the nominees have been selected and their performance and ratings have been confirmed, voting can be held. Once every vote has been cast, either by committee or from the general consensus of every employee, the winner can then be chosen.

Determining the Winner

The honor of Employee of the Month means that only one winner can ever hold it in a given month. Once all nominations have been collected, the group can discuss why each nominee should get the title and bring talks to a consensus, if not unanimous, on the decision. To keep the entire nomination process entirely fair, it is vital to ensure that, if choosing via committee, no committee member campaigns for a nominated employee; to do otherwise is to cast aspersions of favoritism, especially if that nominee is a recent hire.

The End of Shift

Depending on how the process is handled, giving a monthly spotlight to one of your employees can be a great motivator or a sign that judgment is clouded within the company. For example, if you want things done right, decide what the honor means, compare every employee against that checklist, double-check that everything is above-board, and then carry out a proper survey of who most deserves the recognition of Employee of the Month.


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