RPI created its 7 Best Practice Standards® based on a wealth of knowledge and research in order to help you build or better your recognition program. Standard 1 is recognition strategy and Standard 2 is management responsibility. Both are key to carrying out a successful recognition program. Below you will learn more about the differences between rewards and incentives.
The terms “incentive” and “reward” are often mistakenly used interchangeably, and it is crucial to understand the difference between them when crafting a successful recognition program. Here, we will break down both.
According to Merriam-Webster, the definition of incentive is “something that incites or has a tendency to incite to determination or action.”
Incentives are set in the hopes of motivating employees to achieve something rather than giving them a reward after they have already done something. These programs are great ways to boost morale, teamwork and job satisfaction because they set a goal. Fast Company gives a few great examples of ways you can incentivize your employees.
· Offer a monetary bonus for anyone who can produce a well-thought-out plan to grow or better the company.
· Adjust employees’ schedules so that their workday is based on how long it takes them to complete tasks, not a set 9 am-5 pm window. This has the potential to make employees much more efficient.
· Rethink how you offer equity. The article suggests giving more equity based on the worth of the company rather than how long the employee has been there. This incentivizes everyone to work toward bettering the company.
According to Oxford Dictionary, the definition of reward is “a thing given in recognition of one's service, effort or achievement.”
Rewards are a great way to recognize an employee who has already done something great. They can make your employees feel appreciated and build a positive workplace community. Forbes suggests a few ways you can do this.
· Giving a sincere “thank you” is so simple, yet so effective. Taking the time to tell an employee how much you appreciate them in person can go a long way.
· Recognize an employee in front of their coworkers via email, in a meeting or at a company event. This not only instills a sense of pride but also demonstrates what behavior you want to see.
· Pay attention to their interests and give them rewards you know they will like. For example, if they love baseball, leave a few tickets on their desk.
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Learn more about RPI’s 7 Best Practice Standards here.