Choose the Employee Incentive Program Right for Your Company

by: Nichole Gunn December 20, 2010

Employee rewards and incentives proved to be the most significant barometer of organizational climate, also contributing to a company’s financial well-being, according to a Harvard Business Review “study of six leadership styles.”

While incentive programs are established as effective strategies in motivating employees, it’s up to the business owner to determine which incentive programs are most effective for that particular company or industry.

There are a number of reward programs, such as the direct approach which includes gift certificates, cash, and “financially-supported incentives.” But, there are also indirect incentives that may take a bit more creativity to establish. This type of incentive focuses on a worker’s workplace knowledge and individual strengths. Targeting and enhancing these worker areas will foster a better-able and more productive employee.

Other incentives include: flexible work schedules, a shared work-week, transportation to work options, and monthly pizza lunch parties (depending on the size of the staff); the list can go on and on.

When thinking of initiating an incentive program, the most important first step is research and preparation to find the programs that will engage and motivate your employees.

Along with the initiation of an employee incentive program, it’s essential to track its “progress and results.” In addition, the employer and managers need to understand that incentive programs may not offer “immediate data-dependent observations;” a careful analysis of all aspects of the intended results must be gathered and reviewed before attempting to tweak or dismiss the program.