Creating a Winning Strategic Rewards System
16 October, 2014
We have identified the core behaviors that are important to our company, not only because embracing them will fine-tune our critical processes, but also because it will enhance our customer relationships. You have rewards on hand, now what?
In order to implement a winning strategic rewards system, it is imperative that all employees know the behaviors that are expected as well as understand how they relate to the companies business strategies and overarching company goals. In addition to hanging banners that act as reminders for expected behaviors, lead by example at every opportunity as well as give examples during daily, monthly, and quarterly meetings so that they become second nature for employees.
Once employees have had the program and expected behaviors explained, reward them at any opportunity that you see them going above and beyond to exemplify a core behavior.
Rewarding specific behaviors that made a difference to our company is more challenging than rewarding performance, but you can overcome that obstacle by asking, "What are the behaviors I want to reward?" For example, are you rewarding employees for coming in as early as possible and staying late, or for coming up with new ideas on how to complete their work more efficiently and effectively? In other words, are you rewarding someone for innovation or for the amount of time they're sitting at a desk? There's obviously a big difference between the two.
Employees like to know whether they're doing good, bad or average, so it's important that you tell them.
Make it a Winner!
There are two elements that are integral components of a winning strategy: recognition and appreciation. Both are low-cost/high-return ingredients that need not be diminished and must be given equal attention.
Recognition means acknowledging someone before their peers for specific accomplishments achieved, actions taken or attitudes exemplified through their behavior. Appreciation, meanwhile, centers on expressing gratitude to someone for his or her actions. Showing appreciation to your employees by acknowledging the kind of behavior you want to encourage is best done through simple expressions and statements. For example, you might send a personal note or stop by the employee's desk to convey your appreciation. Another approach is to combine recognition and appreciation in the form of a public statement of thanks in front of the employee's co-workers or team, citing specific examples of what they've done that has positively impacted the organization.