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  • Lenora Thomas

Kudos: A new way to thank your employees.

As a manager, I always have the best intentions when it comes to recognizing my team—a word of thanks, a shout out at a meeting, and maybe a line in the weekly company update. But sometimes I forget to share those thank yous. (Sorry team!!)


Enter Tom Short, Founder and Chief Customer Officer, with Kudos. Alongside his co-founder and business partner, Muni Boga, and their team, they have come up with an updated approach for giving kudos with Kudos… But let’s start with a bit of background on Tom.


Tom’s working history predates the Internet when neon and catalogues were still the order of the day. But the marketing skills he developed then helped him build the foundation for one of the first web development and online marketing companies - Idea Machine. From there, he went on to join Rare Method, which offered full marketing services centered around technology development, media planning, and digital marketing.


As part of working at Rare Method, which had offices in Canada and the United States, Tom and his team started to see issues with employee morale and recognition. During our interview, Tom mentioned that if you have teammates who work more than 300 feet apart, they don’t see each other on a day-to-day basis. Add in remote employees and you get even more separation in terms of your corporate culture.


With his executive team, Tom started to look at a better way to connect their organization across offices. The result was Kudos, a peer-to-peer social network that allowed their team to recognize wins as they happened. Whether it is a quick thank you for something small, or a team or company accomplishment, Kudos is a place anyone in the company can recognize peers in real-time.


The benefits spoke for themselves. Immediately, Tom and his team noticed less turnover, better engagement and an improvement in morale. From their internal use, they determined that this was a tool that could be used by other organizations and launched it as a separate company. Kudos is now used in over 80 countries, is available in nine languages and provides not just a way to provide feedback and recognition but to take it the next level and monitor your company health.


As we learn what the long-term impact of COVID-19 will be on our work culture, and as Millennials and Gen-Z become our primary workforce (75% by 2025), I can see how an interactive and engaged approach will help companies. This is especially true as Kudos begins work on integrations into the larger ecosystem of tools (Microsoft, GSuite, Slack) and HR Systems.


As this blog is About Alberta Tech, let’s touch on why Kudos is here in Alberta. Tom and his team are based in Calgary, and while it occurred to them that moving to somewhere like Silicon Valley would speed up their growth, they never really thought about it. Alberta is home and between lifestyle and family, it made it worth it to muscle through the beginner stages of launching their company here.


Tom with his co-founder Muni Boga, are on a mission to change the world one thank you at a time. 


Want to learn more? Tune into my full interview with Tom Short:


Check out their website: www.kudos.com

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