Four Easy Steps To Building A Powerful Employee Incentive Program

Want to build a successful incentive program for your company? Have you dreamt about finding ways to have more fun at work and still see BIG results? At the heart of every employee incentive program is the ability to motivate and reward your team for excellent performance. In this article, I will show you four easy steps to build an incentive program that allows everyone to win!

Setting objectives: For any type of employee incentive program, your team must feel the goals are attainable and realistic. An incentive program should also fit into your company's overall business strategy and be easy to measure. Using targets such as revenue growth, client retention, service satisfaction and profits, are some of the ways to establish incentive objectives. Lastly, the ideal incentive program will allow each person in your company to feel they have an opportunity to win.

Tip From The Coach: To build a powerful incentive program, plan a brainstorming session with your team so they can share unique insight about ways to make the program a giant success. Listen to their input, as they will lead you to the GOLD!

Developing a strategy: Be certain your objectives are simple and well defined. Then, do everything possible to ensure your company goals can be evaluated fairly and objectively. For example, your monthly revenue or the number of new sales each month can be easily measured. Once you have outlined the goals to be measured, then build a specific schedule of how frequently you are going to report the progress of your incentive program. For instance, if your incentive program is going to run for three months, then plan on announcing the rankings every two weeks, to keep top-of-mind awareness. Lastly, clearly outline the rules of your incentive program in writing and define the specific time period to be measured.

Tip From The Coach: When building your strategy, be certain to focus on win/win. Also, consider what will happen to morale if many participants don't---or can't---achieve their incentive objectives.

Establishing awards: Start by establishing your budget for this incentive program by defining the "projected" number of awards to be given. Then, consider the "people profile" of your team to develop appropriate awards that will be memorable and the winners will take pride in receiving. This is another great topic to brainstorm with your team because if you give them an open forum, they will tell you exactly what is important to them and to those they manage.

Tip From The Coach: Your team will be most inspired if they feel the incentive rewards are meaningful enough to justify their efforts. Some award ideas? a nice dinner with the President of your company, education/training classes paid for by the company, a paid day off with cash for shopping, a special plaque to reward top performers, special recognition at your next meeting, or a trip to a vacation resort.

Evaluating the results: Bravo! Your incentive program is completed and now is the time to evaluate the results and to justify the success of your program. Start by getting feedback from your team by surveying them and asking for their feedback. Ask them if the incentive program made a difference in their performance and ask for any suggestions they have to improve future programs. Then, evaluate if the program helped your company achieve its goals while consider any improvements you would make for the next incentive program.

Tip From The Coach: When evaluating the success of your incentive program, look for any side benefits you didn't expect, such as a new spirit of enthusiasm, reduced turnover or increased teamwork.

Want to hear more about this important topic or ask some additional questions about employee incentive programs? Fax a note on your letterhead to 435-615-8670 or send an E-mail to [email protected] and The Coach will fax/E-mail back to you a free invitation to be a participant on a TeleForum conference call.

Author's note: Ernest F. Oriente, The Coach, is the founder of PowerHour® a professional business coaching/recruiting service and the author of SmartMatch Alliances?. He has spent 17,500 hours [since 1995] delivering customized training, by telephone, in leadership, traditional/Internet marketing and sales for fast growing sales companies and entrepreneurial businesses worldwide. PowerHour® specializes in global distance learning by telephone, using their state-of-the-art conference call system for interactive and dynamic TeleForums. Twice-monthly TeleForums link 10-100 executives/professionals/individuals who are geographically dispersed, in a time efficient and profitable format.

PowerHour® is based in Olympic-town?Park City, Utah, at 435-615-8486, by E-mail [email protected] or visit their TeleForum website: To receive a FREE success newsletter, with subscribers in 74 countries, send an E-mail to: [email protected]. Recent PowerHour® articles have appeared in 4000+ business/trade publications and websites.

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