If you’ve ever attended a military presentation you’ve probably seen soldiers being honoured or awarded for their efforts and duties. Oftentimes they’ll be presented with a coin with a unique design on it – this, essentially is a challenge coin.
But, you must have so many questions. What does it symbolize? And why did the soldier receive it? Are they only reserved for soldiers?
Let’s look into the details further around what it means exactly to receive a challenge coin and what they’re all about.
Almost anybody can give or receive a challenge coin. It’s more about the reasoning and meaning behind the desire in giving them, rather than the who.
Challenge coins are small, palm-sized metal coins and do not necessarily always have to be perfectly round. The emblem or logo is embedded into the coin along with the associated colors, textures, and design concept of the organization in which it represents.
Wording, a person’s name, and other features; basically, whatever you’d like, can be permanently engraved onto the coin depending on the nature of its representation.
The best thing about these is that they are possibly the most highly customizable gift or award you could give someone. They can be constructed into all shapes, sizes, and even items like bottle openers, keyrings, and endless other options.
They are usually made out of brass, zinc, or bronze while others can be made from real gold.
Sometimes these days custom challenge coins can be given out for corporate recognition or branding purposes. A company may opt to award a member for the efforts in the form of a badge (coin), with the company’s or business’s logo featuring on it as part of a branding strategy.
But why custom coin? Why not a certificate or some other type of award?
That’s simple. Because:
1. Coins are a much more personalised gesture of recognising achievement, and
2. They’re more displayable, unique and visually intriguing to an audience or admirers.
A paper-form certificate or membership is extremely boring and is nowhere near as sentimental and personal as you could make a custom challenge coin.
Also, the main concept of a challenge coin is to create and strengthen team bonds, representing unity and exclusivity among a particular group.
For example, if you’re relatively new to an organization and you know every member has a coin representing their commitment or loyalty, you’d feel much more respected and appreciated upon receipt of yours, wouldn’t you?
Especially more so than a print form of certification or membership.
But it’s also about pride and feeling a sense of self-establishment within a group dynamic as well.
Modern society and work culture doesn’t necessarily offer that same emotional connection and belongingness as it once did. Which is another beneficial reason to design the perfect challenge coin to mark that special event or milestone.