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How to Word a Plaque for Appreciation

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Receiving a plaque in appreciation of service to a company or charity can be a treasured moment for the recipient. While you may consider using some familiar phrases, the key to wording a plaque is to individualize to content to address the reasons why the person is receiving the plaque. Be specific about the person’s accomplishments, and don’t hold back on the praise.

Brainstorm the points you would like to make and jot them down. If the employee or volunteer is enthusiastic, hardworking, organized or dedicated, mention it. Look at similar plaques for inspiration. You may pick up phrases like “notable achievement,” “commitment and perseverance,” and “award of appreciation.” Use the wording as a model, but create your own original wording.

Include specific examples. If you say the individual is enthusiastic, cite an instance where this was apparent. You might note that “Bob’s enthusiasm was contagious, and he motivated others to perform with the utmost professionalism.” Use the recipient’s name in the wording for the plaque, and note who is bestowing the honor.

Use rhyme if you think it is appropriate. Rhyme can add a touch of whimsy, which can be appreciated by an honoree who has a sense of humor. Consider a quotation from a famous person if the quote captures the essence of the award.

Read the finished text for the plaque aloud to hear how the words flow. Make adjustments as needed, and then proofread carefully for spelling, punctuation, word usage and capitalization. The finished product should be accurate and error free. Have another couple of people look it over as well.

Choose a style of plaque that is appropriate for the occasion. If the recipient is a formal person with a prestigious position, the design of the plaque should reflect that.

Tip

Keep the recipient in mind as you prepare the wording for the plaque. Incorporate words you know will resonate with him or her.

Warning

Do not consider a plaque an opportunity for a roast. While you may include some playful phrases, if appropriate, remember the plaque is likely to be a cherished keepsake.

About the Author

Sharon Penn is a writer based in South Florida. A professional writer since 1981, she has created numerous materials for a Princeton advertising agency. Her articles have appeared in "Golf Journal" and on industry blogs. Penn has traveled extensively, is an avid golfer and is eager to share her interests with her readers. She holds a Master of Science in Education.

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