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What types of employee rewards are most effective? Part 2

Carl Eichstadt and Keith Roxburgh
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In our article last week, we said that we often receive calls from employers who are desperate for a way to better their employee management practices. One of the requests that we hear most often is for us to help them with their employee-retention strategies. We mentioned that one of the things we look at it is the indirect rewards that the company gives their employees. We also look at the non-financial employee rewards which are given.

International and local research - and our experience working with companies - indicates that non-financial employee rewards are ranked as more important by employees in terms of them being motivated to work for a particular company. It should be appreciated, however, that this view is typically based on the assumption employees are happy with the amount of money they're getting out at the end of each month.

We're all familiar with the statements:

  • "People work for leaders and not companies", and
  • "People don't resign from companies – they leave their managers/leaders".

How competent a company's leaders are, at all levels, is the single most important aspect that employees need to stay motivated or be prompted to approach another company for employment.

This means that clarity about a company's leadership strategy, leadership brand, and leadership competencies (including leadership style) needs to be at the heart of a company's strategy. Most importantly, it shapes a high-performance climate-culture.

Many business people regard the leadership aspect as the 'soft' driver of enhancing company effectiveness. However, we feel that leadership is a 'hard' driver that has a proven direct influence on financial and 'bottom-line' business objectives!

Potential employees are attracted by personal development opportunities

For many years, personal development opportunities have been regarded as very important - particularly among relatively younger employees who are hungry to tackle the challenges that the working environment brings.

This trend has increased in the last decade with the expectations of generation X employees and Millenials, and the global economic slowdown. So part of the leadership challenge is to create a receptive environment-climate and talent management strategy to optimise development opportunities and achieve business objectives.

Remember that a genuine and heart-felt 'thank you' goes a long way in terms of non-financial employee rewards which is visible to the employee's peers as do other types of recognition which are recognised among your other employees.

The optimal positive influencer of the employee-employer value proposition is a customised, balanced and holistic employee rewards solution, which is aligned with the company strategy and how they achieve their strategic objectives.


Carl Eichstadt is the Managing Director of 360 People. Carl has a Masters in organisational psychology from the University of Cape Town. 

Keith Roxburgh is director and practice head of reward at 360People. He has extensive experience in organisation design and reward and is viewed as a regional expert in reward management.


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