Are Your Incentives Working?

Just like parenting or coaching or teaching, being a cultural change agent in your workplace is something that is not a one-size-fits-all approach. The company culture at Google is going to be very different than the company culture at your neighborhood auto service station. Thus, part of HR’s job and your job as a leader is to figure out what incentives will work for your particular company culture. What drives your employees? What makes them smile and encourages productivity and team cooperation?

  1. Be consistent with the perks you offer – don’t make changes to the system unless something clearly isn’t working. Employees want something to count on when it comes to company incentive programs.
  2. Make sure the incentive matches up with your core values. If you are the CEO of a corporate law firm, a “bring your dog to work day” probably won’t be the best idea.
  3. Consider the tangible perks that you are offering – gym memberships, gourmet lunches, yoga studio on site – and make sure that this is something that will not just attract employees but that will be utilized so it’s not a waste for the company and is actually helping to retain (and not just attract new) talent.
  4. Make changes with the structural and cultural shifts of your organization. Free coffee might not go very far today in the list of company perks, but holding a monthly achievement recognition meeting might work wonders for your employee efficiency, productivity, and self-worth. If your company culture is making a change to a more wellness-friendly and eco-friendly environment, choose incentives that will back this up (i.e. coveted parking spots for hybrid vehicles, refillable water bottles at the water cooler, etc.).
  5. Lead by example – reward your direct reports in a similar way that you’d like to see take effect company-wide. A newsletter shout-out, maybe? A catered lunch for the team? Whatever the incentive, you should always lead by example.

As is the case with many of the changes you will see in the coming years in HR and across companies worldwide, taking into account several factors before deciding on any big changes will be a huge component to the success of your organization. In a world where employees work remotely, have flexible work schedules, and are literally tied to their work lives with cell phones, tablets, and laptops 24/7, the work-life balance is so critical to employee retention and engagement. Offering incentives that work for you and for your employees is a huge step in the right direction! #HRBlogs #incentive #companyculture