the subtle magic of recognition
by Toby Barazzuol on Thursday Feb 28, 2013

This morning I rode the skytrain into work. It was nice because it gave me some time to catch up on some social media while thinking about recognition and the day ahead. Believe it or not, the two are connected, but I’ll get to that in a moment. Today is a big day for a couple of reasons.

Tonight, we’re excited to be supplying the awards for the Successful You Awards. It’s a great local event that will celebrate 6 amazing BC businesses, although in reality, they have already
recognized 30 outstanding companies who made it as finalists.  Many companies will be transformed by the events that happen at the awards ceremony tonight...I know that we were transformed when Eclipse Awards was recognized as BC’s Best Employer in the 2012 Successful You Awards. It’s sure to be an exciting night for all of the companies involved, as well as the onlookers and other participants!

It’s also a landmark day for me as I will be recognized this evening by the Government of Canada with a Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Award.  These awards are presented to Canadians who have made a significant contribution to their communities, so being recognized for my community building and sustainability work in Strathcona is truly an honour.  If past experiences are any indication, I’m sure that I will be transformed by the event as this recognition is a way for one of my communities to help define and celebrate my role within it.

Recognition is undoubtedly a transformational experience for those that are being recognized. However, the little known magic of recognition is that is also has the ability to transform and inspire those that are looking on. Consider the onlookers - we’ve all been one at some point when we think “oh wow, how great that this person is being recognized for their efforts...I could do that too!” or maybe even “I could do better than that!”.

This is the power and magic of recognition - it indirectly shows people what is valued within a community and inspires them to pursue more of the same. Think of the millions of kids who get into sports after watching a Stanley Cup or Superbowl victory. Think of the young business owners who will aspire to be the Greenest Company or Best Employer. In many ways, it’s the people who are watching who may be most affected.

So what’s the connection with social media? Well I saw this video posted by a friend who was "paying it forward" by sharing it. This heartwarming video really captures the subtle magic of recognition and appreciation and how it can help build resilient and engaged communities. We hope you’ll watch it and we’d love to hear what you think of it!



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