Recognition and rewards can be effective and affordable ways to motivate your staff to perform better. You can use them as management tools to increase productivity and profit, and to help ensure your employees feel valued. This encourages further effort, which is a win–win situation for any business.
It’s easy to confuse a recognition and rewards program with commission income, performance bonuses, or perks like a company car. Like financial incentives, they can increase motivation and performance, but recognition and rewards usually cost your company less, and can often be a more cost-effective motivational tool.
A recognition and rewards program is attractive to employees and can help you recruit or retain top staff. It also shows your company values and rewards performance and productivity, which will attract people with those values and encourage other employees to aspire to those values.
Giving recognition for good effort has a number of benefits, including:
Implementing a recognition and rewards program is a long-term strategy that needs the active support of management to succeed.
For day-to-day work, there are a number of informal ways to provide instant recognition and rewards. You can:
You can also implement a range of formal, periodic options such as:
You could also recognize an individual for outstanding effort or a team for their effort at the end of a project or successful year. Remember to give a gift that reflects the impact of the individual’s or team’s effort.
Finding the right forms of recognition and rewards for your staff is the hardest part of implementing a recognition and rewards program. Be careful not to choose rewards that appeal to you.
Keep the following factors in mind when selecting recognition and rewards that will appeal to your staff.
The best way to find out what will motivate your staff is to ask them what holds the most appeal. Find out what they’re saving up for, what they value in life, and their personal and work goals. Different people will place different values on a company dinner with free alcohol, a horse ride in the country, or a day off work.
Aim to involve your staff in the planning of your recognition and rewards program. This’ll help to identify rewards that excite them and they’ll probably have some good ideas about how to implement the program too.
Your recognition and rewards scheme should be an integral part of your business strategy. It should be used to support the long-term goals of your business. This requires careful planning and attention to detail.
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