Incentive Intelligence

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Incentive

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 →

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 →

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 →

What do you call a reward program designed by committee? A Chimera!

I read Michael Crichton’s book “Next” a few years back. The book focuses on gene therapy and the use – or more accurately –the misuse of genetic material.   Early on in the book the concept of a Chimera was brought up.  A… Continue Reading →

Never Cross the Social and Market Norms Streams

One of my favorite books on influence is “Predictably Irrational” by Dan Ariely. It’s a mash up of “Freakonmics” and “Influence: Science and Practice” and “Fooled by Randomness.” I reference the book regularly and have my e-notes in a special file… Continue Reading →

One Question to Ask if You Want to Increase Performance

Incentive programs reward people for hitting specific goals.  Typically, you announce the requirements and as your audience performs and hit the specified hurdles, they earn awards – points, credits, what have you. The points earned can be redeemed for merchandise,… Continue Reading →

Motivation in Today’s World – Or is it Yesterdays?

Read to the end – surprise awaits! Maximize Overlapping Desires… I realize the changes in the employment picture are challenging. Mostly because today employees (or channel partners and consumers for that matter) look at the world differently. They don’t follow… Continue Reading →

Why Maslow Needs to Retire

A while back (like in 2009) I wrote what follows. This is edited a bit but by and large it is the same post (google seo be damned!) Back then I ran a decidedly unscientific poll asking if Maslow’s Hierarchy… Continue Reading →

How to structure competitive group incentives… correctly

There is a common incentive program structure that has been around forever. It’s called “group competition.” In an incentive program that uses group competition, the audience is segmented into groups based on their performance levels (sales, profits, number of customers)… Continue Reading →

5-Part Blog Series in PDF Form – Thoughts on Enterprise Incentive & Reward Design

The first post in this series went up July 25, 2017 and the final installment was live on October 12, 2017. Can’t rush brilliance – or its opposite. I said when I started the series that I’d combine the posts… Continue Reading →

#1 Thing Incentive Programs Get Wrong

I get frustrated sometimes when I read articles, posts and even books about incentives, rewards, recognition and other topics related to designing and delivering great influence programs. Mostly because I continue to see bad advice being doled out over and… Continue Reading →

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