The following is a guest post by Steven Lee, WooBoard
Most companies believe their reward systems, such as a $5,000 Christmas bonus, holidays to Hawaii or even a monthly gift, are effective to motivate and engage their employees. These structured systems have played a leading role in most employee-related businesses in past decades. But, they may not be as effective within the modern workplace.
Richard Foster, a lecturer at the Yale School of Management and former senior partner at McKinsey & Co. reported a lack of employee engagement across most industries listed in the S&P 500 stock index followed by numerous exits from the index over the past 15 years. Most of the exits were due to company restructure, acquisition and short supply of labor.
If the employment structure was strong, why would employees leave their job giving up free cash and holidays?
Today, employees treat their job as a part of their daily life since they have longer working hours and intensified workloads. This means that they expect to experience communication, engagement and personal ambition in a workplace aligned with the employer’s corporate objectives.
Rewards may temporarily motivate employees but cannot permanently recognize their value. Employees now pursue personal achievement and emotional motivation within a workplace and it is the time for employee recognition to innovate in accordance with such pursuance.
What could be an alternative way to perform employee engagement and recognition?
Physical rewards are unlikely to go away anytime soon. But, rewards and recognition still can work best when praises are appropriate and relevant to the employees’ personal goals. Recognizing the personal goals would motivate employees’ ambitions of commitment to the corporate goals.
What I would like to suggest is to build a team, not a divisional department. Building a team environment has strong potential to encourage positive gossip, recognizing colleagues and comfortable communication between managers and employees. Then a team reward, instead of a personal reward, will play a role in motivating teamwork and a sense of belonging to the business. Once employees stay close the business, they are highly likely to discover value in the business hence will find the most productive ways to contribute to the company.
Money still can help your employees stay ambitious and motivated. But, the first step must start with keeping your human capital close to the business through active engagement and recognition. Don’t forget that your employees are the most invaluable resources to develop your business.
There are a lot more effective ways to recognize and motivate your employees. WooBoard provides a platform that facilitates recognition and fosters workplace productivity.