Workplace Recognition and Incentive Programs

How to Rock Rewards!

Posted on December 4, 2012 by Motivo Staff in Motivation Stream

Compensation will always be the reason we go to work each day. It is our reward for showing up and performing our jobs according to the contract we entered into when accepting employment. Compensation, however, is not a perk or a benefit, it is what we earn for the job we do. I would say it is more accurately a means of keeping score and yet, one of the most important elements in a comprehensive total rewards package. But, is it the best way to attract and keep employees?

You will not attract and retain quality employees without a fair and competitive compensation package. But, how do you keep key talent from walking? Assuming you have the compensation down, it then becomes necessary to get them involved in the company’s vision and mission.  Half of the war is won if you focus on communication. The other half is building a culture of recognition. People want to work where they know their efforts are appreciated.

The mission and vision, if undefined, is useless.  Someone may know what it is but is it being communicated clearly so that all employees may embrace it? What are the details? How do they achieve the goals? What impact does an individual have on the desired outcome? Do they have the necessary tools to get the job done? Are they empowered and energized? Then, it is incumbent upon you to communicate the specifics, set your sites on the results and establish what success looks like with clear goals. And, don’t forget to write it down and publish it!

Now you must make employees feel valued. They need to know that what they do has importance and that they are making progress toward the goal of fulfilling the mission and vision. Feedback is basic to the process. Establish a process and document responses from employees, or if they don’t respond at all. You want employees to know that you are listening to their input. Help employees understand that while you are documenting, their responses will be kept private. You want to elicit both positive and negative input. Adjust your strategy as needed to make the program more effective. A strategy must evolve and change as circumstances dictate. Find out if the rewards offered have value and are desirable and if employees believe they have a fair shot at receiving the reward. This cannot be about favorites! Equal opportunity is important. Now, reward positive behaviors and incremental progress toward the goals. Keep a sore board and make a big deal out of the rewards. Keep employees focused on the progress, impact and value.

Remember, you cannot motivate anyone but you can provide an environment where people choose to be engaged and motivated. Think about directing behaviors, providing feedback and rewarding progress and motivation will follow. An improved employee rewards program could be the added incentive that helps retain employees and keep them engaged in their work, ultimately leading to better results for your company.

Contact us for help with devising a program to enhance engagement.