We all know LÓreal’s famous catchphrase for consumers ‘because you’re worth it’. I believe that all managers should follow this mantra when putting in place their plan for employee engagement.
LÓreal’s employee focus is ‘Be recognized and rewarded’. According to their website, they want all of their employees to be respected and rewarded for their efforts, involvement in and contribution to the company’s performance. In practice, this means a bonus and shares culture.
As Liz Ryan, Founder of Human Workplace says, “The right job gives you much more than just a paycheck. You deserve much more than that!”
But what if a company doesn’t have so much cash at its disposal for rewards? How can managers motivate employees through rewards and recognition on a tight budget?
Here are my top ten tips for rewarding your best performing employees, keeping them engaged and driven to succeed…
- Remember that while perks and prizes do come at a cost, this pales in comparison to the cost of employee dissatisfaction, high turnover and recruiter fees. A survey by Red Letter Days for Business at the end of 2015 showed that after pay rises and work-life balance, rewards and recognition is the biggest motivator for employees.
- A thank you goes a long way – and costs nothing. This can either be verbal, in private or in front of others. If you print a thank you certificate, frame it and display it, then the recipient will be motivated every time they see it.
- Prizes don’t have to be big, but they do have to be personal. Many companies subscribe to a rewards portal where employees can choose what they would like. They also allow employees to top-up so they can upgrade to a more expensive prize. These rewards are often experience based, creating lasting memories for employees.
- Time! Just giving your employee a lie-in one morning, or the ability to leave early, has a great feel-good factor.
- Breakfast from the Boss – brought in by the boss and served at their desk (just find out if they have dietary requirements – not knowing details like that can be impersonal and demotivating).
- The Oscars – invest in some trophies and host your own Oscars ceremony, singling out key performers and tailoring their award to their abilities.
- The good old Employee of the Month – but jazz this one up with something like a crown that is placed on the recipient’s desk for a month.
- Get creative! Make a short video on your iphone talking about why one employee deserves to be thanked. Get others to say a few words on the video, what they like about working with that person, why their work has stood out etc. Then email it to the company, or even put it on your company’s social media pages / website.
- Lunch with the Boss – Serial entrepreneur James Caan says “As a manager, you have to ensure your team actually believe you're willing to listen to them.” Taking the time to find out what your employees’ ambitions are, and challenges they face can be both productive for you, and rewarding for them.
Final points – make sure every reward is genuine and timely. It’s also a good idea to ensure rewards are not all top-down, but also bottom up, and that employees can nominate their peers.
Remember, rewarding and recognizing employees needn’t cost the earth, and can save the company extortionate hiring costs in the long-run.