- Blog post
The top four tangible employee rewards
Tangible employee rewards physically display an employee’s value and superior performance
- Achievement awards.
- Cash substitutes.
- Gifts as employee rewards.
What kind of achievement awards do you have? Do you recognize the best cost saver in the month? Do you recognize the person who came up with the greatest idea to improve revenue? Do you have an atta-boy award?
Many actually develop these employee rewards and make them cute by tying them to their business core values, their culture.
So, think about employee rewards that ties into your business and you can have a lot of fun with doing these.
We can give out weekly employee rewards. We can give them out monthly. You can give them out at a team level, a department level. They can be at a corporate level when you bring everybody together.
So, again, not only are you giving the award for achievement and it could be on a whole variety of things. The person, again, who demonstrated the best values of the company align themselves the most with the culture, had the most fun in their job that month, had the biggest impact with a customer, got an atta-boy from a key client, saved the company from a loss.
You might want to — it’s not just putting the employee rewards program in place and then walking away from it. You might run this for six months to a year and then come up with a different set.
Cash substitutes are giving people things like gift certificates, turkeys, Christmas or thanksgiving. A lot of companies may give script that they can use in the local groceries.
Some of my clients — there are catalogue and promotion companies which have a number of employee rewards like a poster, a monogrammed shirt and when you give an award in a certain value, you might let the employee pick what’s important to them.
Some people will send people on business trips as employee rewards. You know, they’ll take their team to Vegas. They’ll give them $100 American Express dinner certificate and say, take your spouse or significant other or friend out to dinner.
So, there’s all sorts of, what we’ll call cash substitutes and these typically are going to be, you know, well under $100 as an award or recognition.
And I kind of touched a little bit on that in terms of cash substitutes are the gifts that we can give to people. I give out to my employees a lot of times that work for me, those things that I think are made by Mrs. Fields’ cookies. You can order them online. They look like a bouquet of flowers, but what’s on the top of each one is a cookie.
And you can send them — it comes in a nice box. It looks like a box of roses and it’s just appropriate to give to men as they are to women.
You can do different types of gifts like that. It doesn’t necessarily have to have a value. It might mean something that’s important to that person.
Let’s say, you know that that person likes fishing. You might individualize the gift by giving them a unique lure that they’ve been looking for on the team.
And again, it might have a very small value, but it’s something that is meaningful employee reward for that person.
A book. I like managers who give books, audio programs, tools for learning to their employees when they do things or show great performance.
Maybe the employee rewards are giving up the free parking space in front. Maybe we allow them to come in an hour late every morning for a month. Maybe we get a reserved table in the lunch room for two weeks.
What are the kinds of perks that we can offer the folks get very small, may seem meaningless and trivial, but again, it separates them from their peer group. It sets them up, puts them on a pedestal and it says we appreciated what you did and we’re going to do something that you’d like.
Maybe one of those perks is giving them time off to deal with a non-profit that they’re involved in as a volunteer, whether it’s a battered women shelter, maybe it’s children who are homeless, maybe it’s local united weight campaign. And we give them some time to do a community or volunteer event.