How should we set up an employee incentive program?

Question: “We’re a service company, and like everyone else, we’re bracing for the economic downturn and looking for ways to bring in new business. Our president wants HR to implement some kind of incentive or reward program for employees who help get customers to call and invite us to bid. How should I go about setting up such a program? Any ideas on inexpensive rewards that would motivate our staff?” — Steph, FL


For inexpensive rewards see the book 1001 Ways to Reward Employees, it may give you some hints. Try perhaps also to reward differently if the $$ of the bid is larger, how many customers, etc.

While researching the topic of incentives, we stumbled upon what looks like a great resource on the web:

Incentive Central is a nonprofit information portal covering all things incentive, with a variety of white papers, reports and articles on how to encourage employees to help advance an organization’s overall business goals. Granted, the site is funded by a federation of companies in the multi-million dollar “incentives” industry (think watches, plaques and reward trips for top salespeople).

Tough Talks D

However, the site is extremely well organized and full of useful content. It’s worth checking out.

Please email me at the address above, I work for Dade County Schools, I would like more information. Thanks

A committee is a group that keeps the minutes and loses hours.
— Milton Berle


Incentives and rewards should vary depending on what motivates the age group of the individuals. One size does not fit all. Each generation is motivated and rewarded by different things.