Rewarding Employees

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					Rewarding Employees

   Seven Tips for Success

     For More Information Contact:
   Impact Learning Systems International
              P.O. Box 14110
        San Luis Obispo, CA 93406

          Toll Free: 800.545.9003
           Voice: 805.781.3283
            Fax: 805.545.9075

 Rewarding Employees
    Seven Tips for Success
    Trainers and managers everywhere have recognized that in the present job climate, rewarding high
    performers—and enticing lower ones—is more important than ever. When handled well, reward
    programs can inspire employees to improve their performance and to feel good about the work they
    do and the contribution they make to the organization. They can also bring an element of fun and
    excitement into the environment, help keep spirits high, and increase loyalty and company pride.

    When not handled well, however, reward programs can mean disaster for both employees and
    employers. In this article, you’ll learn several valuable tips for keeping your reward practices on
    track. Dozens of additional tips can be found in Managing & Motivating Contact Center Employees
    (McGraw-Hill, December 2002), authored by the Impact Learning Systems team.

    Tip #1: Don’t rely on rewards to do your coaching for you.
    Tangible rewards are a great way to positively reinforce employees for their efforts, but you
    shouldn’t rely on them to do your coaching for you. Rewards should be offered from time to time,
    but consistent and regular feedback on performance (in the form of praising and correcting) is

    Tip #2: Don’t reward employees for doing what’s expected.
    Don’t reward people simply for meeting the standards of the job. For example, if employees are
    required to be at work at 7:30 AM and only some of them show up at that time, you might be
    tempted to think that you can change the behavior of the latecomers by rewarding those who are
    on time. Maybe—but it’s a dangerous gamble. Those who show up on time will likely be
    embarrassed and those who are late will eventually learn that the only drawback to being late is
    that they don’t get a reward. Better to correct the undesirable behavior with effective feedback.

    Tip #3: Don’t be cheap.
    If people work hard to achieve some company-mandated goal and are then given a ball-point pen,
    they might feel less than thanked. Rewarding is not only about giving some tangible award; it’s also
    about honoring employees and treating them with dignity. Don’t let cheap rewards devalue their

© 2010 Impact Learning Systems International                               1
    Tip #4: Avoid extravagance.
    Just as rewards can be too cheap, they can also be too expensive, flashy, or otherwise extravagant.
    Although people enjoy receiving big rewards, there’s a danger of sending the wrong message.
    Employees may come to resent the fact that the organization is “wasting” big bucks on flashy
    rewards if they feel they’re working day in and day out for relatively low pay.

    Tip #5: Reward more than just performance.
    Rewards don’t necessarily have to be related to performance. They can also be given to employees
    as positive reinforcement for their behavior or for particular actions or ideas that they initiate.

    Tip #6: Make sure the reward is meaningful to the recipient.
    Think about how people feel when, after working hard to reach a particular goal, they’re given a
    reward that they can’t enjoy—for example, tickets to a basketball game for someone who has zero
    interest in sports, or dinner for two at a steak house for a vegetarian. The repercussions of this kind
    of oversight can be even worse than giving no reward because the employee recognizes that in your
    attempt to show how valuable she is to the company, you’ve actually shown that the company
    doesn’t know or understand her at all.

    Tip #7: Reward employees who complain.
    What? We promise—this is a great idea! Employees who inform you of what’s not working in your
    organization are giving you valuable information about how you can improve workplace conditions
    and service levels. We do suggest, however, that you teach employees how to complain in a
    constructive, solution-oriented way.

    For More Information
               Learn more about Customer Service Training on our Customer Service Blog. Remember
                to subscribe to it via RSS or email so you’ll remain informed.
               Order a copy of our 296-page book, Managing & Motivating Contact Center Employees
                for even more tips improving morale and motivation.
               Stay up to date with our free monthly newsletter which brings you articles on current
                call center topics and upcoming events.

© 2010 Impact Learning Systems International                                  2