Employee Incentive Programs for Small Businesses

by: Nichole Gunn December 10, 2010

Employee incentive programs go a long way in increasing employee productivity and promoting company loyalty. This strategy works whether the company is big or small. Although, smaller businesses may find a tight budget needs to be tweaked in order to implement and maintain incentive programs.

According to the Washington Post, executive director of the Naperville, Illinois, Incentive Marketing Association Karen Renk notes that “in good times or bad, organizations are well served by creating a culture of recognition for their employees as well as their customers.” While this is easier to do in prosperous times, it’s just as important, if not more so, that these incentive programs continue during stressful economic times.

Employee incentive rewards have proven to be a valuable tool in enhancing employee morale. Being recognized and rewarded for achieving a goal, or for quality work is as valuable to employees as monetary benefits. These rewards are tangible and can be easily and quickly doled out as needed.

The rewards can range from gift cards, to electronics, to an employee sales-tax-free day. The idea is to be creative and find rewards that will encourage employees to succeed. While a pat on the back can lift an employee’s morale, tickets to a ball game or amusement park, or a gift certificate to a local restaurant will have him grinning from ear to ear.

Incentive programs serve as a valuable tool in employer/employee relationships. The rewards motivate employees by fostering employee satisfaction and company loyalty. They also offer bottom line benefits to the employer, such as reduced absenteeism and increased productivity.