Everyone Wants Their 15 Minutes

15 minutes

Mine started in 2003. I say “started” because my brief bout with fame lasts with me today.

On October 5th 2003, over 9 million viewers tuned into Trading Spaces $100 Grand, starring yours truly, along with lesser known celebrities such as Paige Davis and Ty Pennington.

The journey started many months before, when on a whim, my wife Tina decided to apply for the show. After many phone interviews and a visit from a talent scout, the popular show selected us for their grand episode.

Just like my personal experience, I find many employees crave their 15 minutes of fame. Their hope is that someone will take notice of the extra efforts they are putting in and take time to recognize them. Each year organizations look to the Gallop Q12 study to see what impact employee engagement is having on our economy. Not surprisingly, the negative impact continues to increase as the number of “disengaged” employees rises across North America.

Gallop’s quick 12 question survey covers a broad range of topics. The one question that typically ranks lowest amongst employees is, “In the last seven days, I have received recognition or praise for doing good work.” All too often managers ignore the positive things that are happening around them. Even more, managers often wait too long to say thanks, typically waiting for a monthly, quarterly or annual awards ceremony. The positive effects of timely and sincere recognition has long lasting impact.

Years after my brief brush with fame I’m often asked to share my experience with others. I enjoy doing so and clearly remember all that details from this memorable experience. Effective recognition and communication acts much the same. When done properly, employees remember their time in the lights…sometimes a lifetime.

Jim Drakakis


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