Incentive Intelligence

Performance Compounding

Too often we think in terms of the “big score.” Landing that whale account. Hitting the lottery. But if you really want to be successful, think about doing something – almost anything – a little better every day. Small improvements… Continue Reading →

You Are What You Signal

Your mission and values say you respect the customer and would never lie to them to make a buck. But your incentive program provides huge rewards for increasing sales to clients based solely on total dollars sold and no other… Continue Reading →

“The only sin is mediocrity.” – Martha Graham

Register for our webinar being held tomorrow, Tuesday – September 17th at 12 Noon EDT (11:00 am CDT) We talk about all the sinning going on with incentive program design. Pearls may be clutched! Webinar panelists will include myself and Kurt… Continue Reading →

The Best Thing About Points-Based Incentives?

You can reward anything you want. Think about that. When you have a flexible platform for rewarding behaviors and outcomes you can experiment a bit. If you think having your salespeople go to more networking events will drive sales, then… Continue Reading →

The Reverse Sear of Incentives

I’m a convert. I never grill a good steak on the grill from raw. I now use the reverse sear method. To reverse sear a steak, you first slow cook the steak in the oven at about 250 degrees Fahrenheit… Continue Reading →

9-11

  “Someone mentioned your name today, took me down memory lane, to a time very much younger, a time more pure, more sane.” ― Adiela Akoo, Lost in a Quatrain: Poetry Anthology      

Incentive Programs Are About Choices – Not “Conditioning”

There is a lot of conversation in the incentive blogsphere (yeah – it’s a thing) about how incentive programs influence behaviors. So much of it is misinformed and just bad design. There is too much braying from program designers who… Continue Reading →

The Forgotten Program

I kid with clients that most of the programs I see run by my competitors are “Ron Popeil” programs. They set them and forget them. The programs launch with a bunch of fanfare. And then maybe once a month the… Continue Reading →

Incentive Programs Are Not About Shopping

Most incentive programs are designed to allow participants to earn a “branded currency” redeemable for awards such as electronics, home goods, trips. Nothing wrong with that. Until you read how the programs are promoted. “Go shopping with your points!” “Peruse… Continue Reading →

Never Allow Program Participants to “Buy Up” to Get Awards

Some incentive programs allow participants to use cash to augment their award point earnings to redeem for trips and merchandise when they don’t have enough points for the full value of the reward. DO NOT DO IT! NEVER. FULL STOP…. Continue Reading →

Rewarding Luck but Ignoring Behavior

Seth Godin’s blog the other day suggested you spend more time modeling behaviors against a standard, not just on whether the outcome was positive. This is one of the key issues I have with many incentive program designs. Too many… Continue Reading →

Your Incentive Program Shouldn’t be About Incentives

Too many non-cash incentive programs focus too much on the award and the earning criteria. The program is designed to that there are only a couple of criteria for earning an awards. Sell more earn a trip. Sell this and… Continue Reading →

Rebooting Incentive Intelligence

I started blogging in 2006 with the blog called “Incentive Intelligence.” I had to write under a pseudonym to hide my corporate attachment because the “lawyers” at my company said it was too risky to blog. (Pro-tip: Lawyers make lousy… Continue Reading →

The “Intelligence By Proximity” Fallacy

But let’s not let someone get away with “intelligence by proximity” or as I like to say – “Standing next to Einstein” and hoping the buyer can’t tell the difference between them and a real thought leader.

The Questions I Get Most Often About How to Design an Incentive Program

Every day I have to spend an inordinate amount of time explaining why there isn’t a foolproof, one-sized-fits-all answer to the questions my clients ask. Questions like:  “What works?”   “How do I motivate my people?”   “What’s the best… Continue Reading →

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