The Three P’s of Reward and Recognition

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Are reward and recognition programs important in a business environment? Studies have shown that rewards and recognition motivate people do a better job because they know they are valued and increasingly realize how important they are to the business. Motivated people offer great potential for success in business projects, team efforts, and job performance. A reward and recognition program helps to motivate people best when it offers everyone in the organization an opportunity to be acknowledged and the people involved are openly recognized as valuable to the business.

Most business managers realize there are two types of rewards, monetary and non-monetary. Monetary includes hard dollar incentives in the form of bonuses or raises individuals or groups may receive for satisfactory or above work performance. Non-monetary rewards are what many managers think of in relation to promotions, high-profile job assignments, or other form of soft recognition. Whether the reward is monetary or non – soft or hard, it should be tailored to the individual or group by determining what would be best personally and proportionally, as well as bringing pleasure to the recipients.

Rewards should be:

  • Personal by determining whether they prefer private or public recognition and communicating with the individuals involved to see what they prefer, whether it is an award, a gift, time-off, or money.
  • Proportional by balancing the size or type of reward with the individual or group contribution and accomplishments as it relates to organizational goals.
  • Pleasurable means making things fun and entertaining through the event in which rewards are given or by the selection of a creative reward.

When looking at recognition, mangers should look at the internal and external benefits for the recipients. Internal benefits include the feeling of pride and satisfaction a person or team may get from a job well-done and their personal motivators for continuing to do well. External benefits would relate to what can be seen, touched, or used by the individual or team. These types of recognition are used to reinforce a particular behavior in the recipients. They also may provide a short-term benefit to the manager by increasing the level of motivation or good behaviors from the recipients of the recognition. Both internal and external recognition must be promptly given with precise and principled acknowledgment of why it is being given.

Recognition should be:

  • Precise by giving individual or group detailed information on relevancy of what was done, as well as acknowledging when, where, why, and how it was done.
  • Principled by showing sincere and honest acknowledgment of an individual or group that supports organizational beliefs and values through their commitment and accomplishments.
  • Prompt by giving well-timed acknowledgment as soon as possible after the event has occurred or action has been completed.

Rewards and recognition are used to motivate people do a better job. Motivated people are important for the success of a business through its projects and teams. A reward and recognition program that helps to motivate people should be an important and highly valued part of doing business.