Career Achievement talking points for managers

Talking points screen captureIn 2017, UK HealthCare modified how we celebrate employees who achieve a milestone anniversary (e.g. 5-year increments:  5, 10, 15, etc.). This change was implemented based on specific feedback received from our employees on the Employee Engagement survey. We conduct a monthly celebration to timely recognize honorees in the month of their anniversary.

Honorees receive a Yearbook, which highlights snapshots, stories and quotes from the employee’s manager, peers, etc. to honor the employee’s relationship, celebrate accomplishments and memories of the employee’s career. In addition, the employee is able to select a gift item from a variety of gift options (a service pin is an option). Below are items to consider and talking points that we encourage managers to share with their employee/s.

Importance of celebrating career achievement

  • Creates a culture of appreciation and belonging.
  • Improves vertical engagement (employee to manager).
  • Career achievement touches every employee at every level (management vs. employees vs. coworkers).
  • Retention: research shows recognizing years-of-service programs keep employees an average of 2 to 3 years longer than companies without a program (average 6.7 years with program vs. 4.7 years without).

Manager action items

  • Yearbook with comments screen captureKnow who on your team is being honored for a milestone anniversary (5-year increments).
  • Share career achievement honorees with your team and others (e.g. staff meetings, division meetings, etc.).  
  • Review and manage area coverage to allow team members to attend the ceremony if possible.
  • Write a leader comment in the Yearbook, and forward to peers/others and encourage them to share a comment, picture, and/or memory.  Follow up to make sure individuals received the email and do not miss the deadline.
  • Invite the honoree and block your calendar to attend the ceremony to show your support. 
  • Encourage peers to attend the ceremony to demonstrate their support.

Manager talking points

  • Screen cap of talking points for congratulationsCongratulations on your (number) years of service!  I appreciate all you do every day and the contributions you make to our team and organization!
  • I highly encourage you to attend the upcoming Career Achievement ceremony on (date).
  • It is extremely important to me to celebrate your achievement.  I will be attending this event to honor your accomplishment.  This is just one way as your supervisor I can show my admiration to your service and dedication.   
  • The celebration demonstrates our commitment to diversity by celebrating employees who have 5 years of service up through 30 years or more of service.  It takes a team of all experience levels to accomplish all we do.  
  • I have invited others to attend the celebration as well.  Although we have to maintain coverage, I want to ensure we all publicly recognize your years of service and how you have contributed to the success of our team and organization.  
  • After the ceremony, there will be a reception and a chance to talk with others across the organization.


Resources and more information can be found on the Career Achievement SharePoint or ITL page


Contact information: Chelsea Smitson or Crystal Gabbard