6 rules for rewards

Original author: Jurgen Appelo
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imageFrom the translator. The question of whether to give bonuses, bonuses and other goodies is quite acute in many organizations. I would like to introduce 6 tips on this topic from Jürgen Appelo, author of Management 3.0. Jürgen ranks 6th in the ranking of the most influential people in Agile (agile development), and his blog is recognized as the third most popular blog in the Agile world. Jurgen's approach is very entertaining and, most importantly, rational. “Your career is your responsibility. Your employer is not your mother, ”says Jürgen.

As I wrote earlier, the distribution of awards to employees is most often realized through bonuses. A counterproductive method that (usually) does more harm than good.

Fortunately, there is good news. There are rewards that induce intrinsic motivation, are more effective and economically much cheaper. Such rewards can work for your organization, not against it. Just make sure you consider the following six rules:

Do not promise rewards in advance.
Distribute rewards when people do not expect them, so that they do not change their behavior and do not begin to change their work in order to receive a reward. When recognition of good work comes as a surprise, studies say, intrinsic motivation will not be eroded.
Make the expected promotion small.
If you cannot stop people from anticipating potential profits, make the reward small (and make sure they know that it is small). WHY?! Because the expectation of a big reward is likely to reduce people's productivity. This can happen because the stress of waiting for encouragement will interfere with people's memory.
A regular, not a one-time reward.
Every day can be a day to celebrate. When people do useful work all the time, there is always the opportunity to earn rewards.
Reward publicly, not privately.
Since promotion is recognition of good work, and people enjoy it, everyone should understand what a person is rewarded for and how. Therefore, regular public announcement of the results works better than annual, but private.
Encourage behavior, not result.
The result is often just a shortcut, while human behavior speaks of work and effort. Thus, focus on the right behavior of people to show what you want from people. When you focus on the desired result, people can learn to cheat.
The reward of equals, not subordinates.
Find a way so people can reward each other because colleagues often know better than managers who deserve encouragement from their colleagues.

These six rules for rewards give you more chances to increase the productivity and interaction of people, while internal motivation is encouraged rather than destroyed. In my experience, a casual compliment during a meeting for a job well done meets all six criteria.

It’s not so difficult to get a reward system in your organization. And if you do it well, everyone will enjoy it.

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