The Cable and Telecommunications Human Resources Association (CTHRA) honored Terese Farmen, Cox Communications’ recognition program manager, with the Aspiring Leader award for her passion, energy and dedication to Cox’s recognition program Amplifi.
Since 2007, CTHRA has acknowledged these individuals for going beyond their typical duties and thinking outside the box to shape their company culture and the field as a whole.
Farmen is an example of passion and energy. She currently serves as the manager of Cox’s recognition program Amplifi, and co-led a cross-functional team that includes representatives from public affairs, HR, marketing, product, training and tech. The team works to encourage employees to learn more about the company’s products through engagement, recognition and skills building, and in turn improve the customer experience.
Farmen was able to add fun into the mix by adding games into the Amplifi program. In its first effort, Gamified Quizzing saw 50% participation among employees, and now an average of 30% of employees play a game each month to increase product knowledge. Overall, Farmen’s initiatives in Amplifi have touched 97% of the entire employee base YOY. In the first half of 2018, 94% of Cox employees received recognition for work directly tied to company goals.
She believes in the importance of recognizing employee achievements in not just boosting morale, but also in improving company culture and company productivity. “I think when employees understand what their work is doing to contribute to the company’s success, they have more of a stake in what they’re doing and how they perform, and a lot of that behavior is intrinsic. It helps employees really become a true ambassador for the company,” Farmen explained.
How do you think your work with Amplifi has positively influenced Cox?
I think that a lot of times people see recognition as a touchy-feely aspect of HR, and the research is really showing that recognition and feeling like you contribute to the company’s bottom-line and in some way that your work is meaningful is really important in today’s world. I think when employees understand what their work is doing to contribute to the company’s success, they have more of a stake in what they’re doing and how they perform, and a lot of that behavior is intrinsic. It helps employees really become a true ambassador for the company.
In all the initiatives you’ve begun or taken part of since joining Cox, what are you most proud of and why?
There’s quite a few projects I’ve been involved in, because I was a project manager before I worked in the recognitions space. A lot of the work had to do with in the customer space, and just watching how employees of the company come together to figure out a better way to do things. It’s really great to see a lot of out-of-the box thinking, and I think employees really care about the customer. I think it just makes it better for everybody, it makes sense for employees to see how it’s easier for the company. Definitely launching a recognition platform for the whole company was the highlight of my career. I felt like it was a very collaborative work with all of the leaders and employees and getting the best possible program out there. I helped to be part of a few of the centralized communications we have as a company. I was part of a few task forces that reunited a few managers and directors from the other markets.
What advice do you have for other HR professionals in the industry?
I think that a lot of times we get focused on the external recruitment of talent into our company, and I think we can really take a more holistic view of not just attracting employees, but being a company where employees who work there want to be part of, especially with the trends that we’re seeing in the workplace. Employees may not be staying as long as they used to, so having ways to keep employees happy can really help the company.