Employee Spotlights: How to Create the Best Employee Spotlight Program in 2024!

Employee spotlight thumbnail

Employee spotlights are the least you can do to thank your incredibly hard-working staff and in this article, we’ll make sure that when you do implement an employee spotlight program, you do it well!

Was that a bit too harsh a start? We’re sorry! We are just way too excited about this. Employee engagement is one of the most important issues in performance management today and while employee spotlights may not be the be-all-end-all when it comes to getting disengaged employees back on track, it is a start!

In this article, we’ll go into just how you can start spotlighting your employees, the types of questions you can ask during employee spotlights, and of course look over some of the best employee spotlight examples around.

Before we get started…

We here at Teamflect have our roots deep in employee recognition. We built the best employee recognition software for Microsoft Teams for that very reason, before evolving it into an incredible performance management system. And you can try it for free! Without signing up!

Teamflect’s recognitions module allows users to exchange customizable recognition badges across Teams chat, create leaderboards, exchange crisp and clear feedback, and do so much more, without ever leaving Microsoft Teams!

Use the best performance review software for Microsoft Teams.
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What is an employee spotlight?

Spotlight employee recognition programs are dynamic processes that shines a well-deserved light on the exceptional individuals, giving them a moment to step into the limelight and be recognized for their unique talents and contributions.

The purpose of an employee spotlight program extends far beyond mere recognition; it’s about fostering a sense of appreciation and community within the workplace.

Showcasing individual employees and their achievements, helps organizations create an atmosphere of inclusivity, gratitude, and camaraderie.

From the newest team member who brought fresh ideas to a project, to the seasoned professional who consistently goes above and beyond, an employee spotlight provides a stage for employees to share their experiences, lessons learned, and insights gained.

Why should you do employee spotlights?

why should you do employee spotlights

In a world where businesses are continuously evolving and adapting, one constant remains: the value of the people who make up the workforce.

Often overlooked in the grand scheme of operations, employee spotlights are a powerful tool that can bring about transformative changes within an organization.

1. Boosts Employee Morale and Motivation

Recognizing and celebrating employees for their achievements creates a sense of validation and accomplishment.

Employee spotlight programs provide dedicated spaces to showcase the exceptional work and dedication of team members, boosting their self-esteem and reinforcing their commitment to the organization.

2. Builds a Sense of Community and Connection

Modern workplaces can sometimes feel disconnected due to remote work arrangements and diverse teams. Employee spotlights bridge this gap by sharing personal stories, achievements, and interests.

As employees read about their colleagues’ experiences, they find common ground and shared values, leading to a stronger sense of community.

3. Showcases Diverse Talents and Perspectives

Every employee brings a unique set of skills, experiences, and perspectives to the table. Employee spotlights shed light on this diversity, creating an inclusive environment where differences are celebrated.

Employee Spotlight Types

Employee Spotlight Example - Jane Smith
This particular employee spotlight templates comes courtesy of Edit.Org

When it comes to showcasing your employees’ talents and contributions, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach. Employee spotlights can take various forms, each with its own unique benefits and impact.

When it comes to showcasing your employees’ talents and contributions, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach. Employee spotlights can take various forms, each with its own unique benefits and impact.

1. Written Profiles

Written profiles are a classic and effective way to introduce employees to the rest of the organization. These profiles are typically published on company websites, employee spotlight newsletters, or internal communication platforms.

They provide a space for employees to share their professional journey, accomplishments, and insights. Written profiles allow for a detailed exploration of an employee’s background, experiences, and contributions, enabling readers to connect with their story on a deeper level.

2. Video Interviews or Features

Video is a dynamic medium that can capture the essence of an individual in a way that text sometimes cannot. Video interviews or features provide a visual and auditory experience that brings an employee’s personality to life.

These employee spotlights can be shared on social media platforms, company intranets, or during team meetings. Video spotlights enable employees to share their stories in their own words, showcasing their passion and enthusiasm for their work.

3. Q&A Sessions

Q&A sessions are a great way to engage employees and provide insights into their thoughts and experiences. These sessions can be conducted during team meetings, town halls, or virtual events.

Ask employees a set of engaging and thought-provoking employee spotlight questions related to their role, achievements, and personal interests. Q&A employee spotlight posts encourage interaction, allowing employees to learn from one another and gain a deeper understanding of their colleagues’ perspectives.

4. Recognition through Internal Communication Channels

Recognizing employees through internal communication channels, such as emails or announcements, is a simple yet impactful way to celebrate their achievements.

These brief spotlights can highlight specific accomplishments, project successes, or noteworthy contributions.

While not as extensive as other spotlight types, they are a quick and efficient way to consistently acknowledge the hard work of employees.

If you’re wondering how you can turn even the simplest communication channel, such as Microsoft Teams, into an employee recognition platform, we suggest you watch this helpful guide:

How to do an employee spotlight?

Creating an impactful employee spotlight requires careful planning, thoughtful execution, and a genuine commitment to showcasing the unique qualities of your team members.

We have to set the record straight here. If we have to refer to one of the most horrifying idioms in the English language: There is more than one way to skin a cat!

There is no singular way to map out and prepare a team member spotlight! The way you will spotlight your employees in your organization will definitely vary depending on who your people are, your company culture, and a million other reasons.

That being said, we did want to highlight some helpful steps!

Step 1: Planning and Preparation

Determine Frequency and Timing: Decide how often you’ll feature employee spotlights. It could be monthly, quarterly, or on special occasions. Consistency is key to keeping employees engaged and excited.

Select Spotlight Subjects: Identify employees to be featured. Consider factors such as tenure, achievements, and representation of diverse roles and teams. Variety is essential to showcase the breadth of talent within your organization.

Choose Spotlight Formats: Decide on the types of spotlights that best suit your company culture and resources. Will you focus on written profiles, video interviews, Q&A sessions, or a mix of formats?

Step 2: Gathering Information

Communicate with Employees: Reach out to the selected employees and explain the spotlight program. Ensure they’re comfortable with the process and understand the benefits of participating.

Collect Details: Gather information about the employee’s professional journey, accomplishments, hobbies, and personal anecdotes. These details will help you craft a compelling spotlight.

Step 3: Crafting Compelling Content

Write Engaging Narratives: For written spotlights, create narratives that capture the employee’s journey, challenges overcome, and impact on the organization. Use descriptive language to paint a vivid picture.

Prepare Interview Questions: If you’re conducting interviews, prepare a list of thought-provoking questions that delve into the employee’s experiences, motivations, and insights. Keep the employee spotlight questions conversational and open-ended.

Incorporate Company Values: Highlight how the employee’s contributions align with the company’s values and goals. This reinforces the importance of their work within the larger context of the organization.

Step 4: Design and Presentation

Visual Consistency: Ensure that the design elements of your spotlights are consistent with your company’s branding. Use colors, fonts, and graphics that reflect your brand identity.

Create Engaging Graphics: For video spotlights, consider using graphics or animations to enhance the visual appeal. Thumbnails, banners, and introductory animations can capture attention and set the tone.

Step 5: Distribution and Promotion

Choose Distribution Channels: Decide where to publish or share the spotlights. Common channels include your company website, internal newsletters, social media platforms, and intranet.

Craft Compelling Headlines: Write attention-grabbing headlines and descriptions that entice readers or viewers to engage with the spotlight content. A well-crafted headline can significantly impact click-through rates.

Encourage Engagement: Invite employees to like, comment, and share the spotlights. Foster a sense of community by encouraging colleagues to support and celebrate one another.

Sample Employee Spotlight Questions

If there is one thing we love here in the Teamflect blog, it is sample questions! So far, we’ve published articles on sample pulse survey questions, sample team check-in questions, sample exit interview questions, and today, we want to bring you some of the best employee spotlight questions we could come up with!

You can take your employee spotlight questions in multiple different directions. The employee spotlight questions you should pick really depend on what type of spotlight you aim to do. Will it be a fun, lighthearted employee spotlight? Or will it be a serious companywide memo with a more formal tone?

Just in case, we put together some fun employee spotlight questions alongside some more serious employee spotlight questions examples.

  1. Professional Background Employee Spotlight Questions:
    • What inspired you to pursue a career in (industry)?
    • Can you share a key milestone or accomplishment in your professional journey?
    • How did you get started in your current role?
  2. Job Responsibilities Employee Spotlight Questions:
    • What does a typical day look like for you in your role?
    • What projects are you currently working on that you’re excited about?
    • How do your daily tasks contribute to the overall success of the team or company?
  3. Skills and Expertise Employee Spotlight Questions:
    • What skills or qualities do you think are essential for success in your role?
    • Are there any specific certifications or courses that have been particularly valuable in your career?
  4. Team Dynamics Employee Spotlight Questions:
    • How would you describe the team culture in your department?
    • Can you share a memorable team achievement or collaboration experience?
    • How do you contribute to a positive team environment?
  5. Personal Interests Employee Spotlight Questions:
    • What do you enjoy doing outside of work?
    • Are there any hobbies or activities that you’re particularly passionate about?
    • How do you balance your personal interests with your professional life?
  6. Advice and Insights Employee Spotlight Questions:
    • What advice would you give to someone starting their career in (industry)?
    • How do you stay motivated and overcome challenges in your role?
    • Is there a specific lesson or insight you’ve gained in your career that you’d like to share?
  7. Fun and Light-hearted Employee Spotlight Questions:
    • If you could have any job for a day, what would it be and why?
    • What’s your favorite office tradition or team activity?
    • Can you share a funny or interesting story from your time at the company?
  8. Professional Growth Employee Spotlight Questions:
    • How has your role evolved since you first joined the company?
    • Can you discuss a challenging project that helped shape your professional growth?
    • What goals do you have for your career in the next few years?
  9. Innovation and Creativity Employee Spotlight Questions:
    • How do you approach problem-solving and fostering innovation in your role?
    • Can you share a project where you had to think creatively to overcome a challenge?
    • What role do you think creativity plays in the success of your team or projects?
  10. Leadership and Mentorship Employee Spotlight Questions:
    • How do you approach leadership in your current position?
    • Have you had a mentor who significantly influenced your career? How?
    • What advice do you have for someone aspiring to take on a leadership role in your field?
  11. Work-Life Integration Employee Spotlight Questions:
    • How do you manage your work-life balance, especially during busy periods?
    • Are there any routines or habits that help you maintain a healthy work-life integration?
    • Can you share a specific instance where work-life integration positively impacted your productivity?
  12. Industry Trends and Future Outlook Employee Spotlight Questions:
    • How do you stay updated on industry trends and advancements in your field?
    • Can you discuss a project where you had to adapt to emerging industry trends?
    • What do you think the future holds for (industry), and how are you preparing for it?

5 Free Employee Spotlight Templates

1. Green and Artsy Employee Spotlight Template

Employee Spotlight Template

Celebrate your team member’s contributions with a touch of creativity. This template incorporates artistic elements into your employee recognition while maintaining a minimalistic aesthetic.

2. Blue Simple Employee Spotlight Template

For a clean and straightforward approach, this template should be your go-to choice. The design focuses on the essential details and makes it easy to showcase your employee’s achievements and contributions. Perfect for companies that value clarity and a modern aesthetic.

simple employee spotlight template

3. Elegant Employee Spotlight Template

The design of this template incorporates elegant accents, creating a visually pleasing spotlight that highlights professionalism. Especially suitable for companies with a focus on luxury, high-end services, or those looking to showcase their team in a polished manner.

Elegant employee spotlight template

4. Pink Floral Employee Spotlight Template

With this template you can bring a touch of floral charm to your employee spotlights. Its design incorporates pink hues and floral elements and creates a warm and inviting spotlight. Perfect for highlighting achievements in a vibrant and friendly way.

floral employee spotlight template

5. Geometric and Blue Employee Spotlight Template

Add a modern and dynamic flair to your employee recognition with this template. Its design features bold geometric shapes and a cool blue color scheme and creates a visually striking spotlight. Ideal for companies in tech, design, or any industry that values innovation and a contemporary aesthetic.

Geometric and blue employee spotlight template

Best Employee Spotlight Examples

1. Social Media Employee Spotlight Example: Adobe

Adobe has an incredible employee spotlight series “A day in the life of…”. This series doesn’t just live on Youtube! They’ve adapted it in some shape or form to Instagram and other social media platforms as well.

We’ve talked extensively about the benefits of social media shout-outs in our article on different types of employee recognition, but it is safe to say that Adobe both boosts employee engagement and paints itself as an incredible place to work in one fell swoop!

2. Video Employee Spotlight Example: Staples

This particular employee spotlight by Staples, does an incredible job of not only highlighting just how awesome the employee is but paints the organization in an amazing light as well.

While this particular employee spotlight video is sure to boost employee morale and motivation, it is also a straight-up free ad campaign that screams they have great customer service. As is the case with Adobe, it also promotes Staples as a great place to work.

Closing Words

Employee engagement is a crucial component of performance management, and by employee spotlights can create a positive and motivated workplace culture.

As we said, various emloyee spotlight examples, such as written profiles, video interviews, Q&A sessions, and internal communications, offer flexibility to show the diverse talents and achievements in your company.

Keep in mind that spotlight employee recognition programs should go beyond mere acknowledgment. They also need to boost morale and build a sense of community by appreciating the unique qualities of your team members.

As Teamflect, we understand the importance of employee recognition, and that’s why we’ve developed the best employee recognition software for Microsoft Teams.

Through Teamflect’s recognitions module our users can exchange customizable recognition badges, provide feedback, and create leaderboards.

Use Teamflect to create a workplace community that’s built on appreciation and more! Try it today by clicking the button below!

Frequently Asked Questions

What is an employee spotlight?

Spotlight employee recognition programs are dynamic processes that shine a well-deserved light on exceptional individuals, giving them a moment to step into the limelight and be recognized for their unique talents and contributions.

The purpose of an employee spotlight program extends far beyond mere recognition; it’s about fostering a sense of appreciation and community within the workplace.

Why should you do employee spotlights?

1. Boosts Employee Morale and Motivation
2. Builds a Sense of Community and Connection
3. Showcases Diverse Talents and Perspectives

How to do an employee spotlight?

Step 1: Planning and Preparation
Step 2: Gathering Information
Step 3: Crafting Compelling Content
Step 4: Design and Presentation
Step 5: Distribution and Promotion

Written by Emre Ok

Emre is a content writer at Teamflect who aims to share fun and unique insight into the world of performance management.

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