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Understanding theories behind employee rewards programs can help businesses

There are many theories supporting the construction of employee rewards programs, each outline a different idea of what staff members need to be successful. Maslow's hierarchy of needs frames worker motivation as a multi-stage process, according to The Winnipeg Free Press. While the first two stages are concerned with physical and social needs, the latter […]

There are many theories supporting the construction of employee rewards programs, each outline a different idea of what staff members need to be successful.

Maslow's hierarchy of needs frames worker motivation as a multi-stage process, according to The Winnipeg Free Press. While the first two stages are concerned with physical and social needs, the latter is most relevant to businesses. In it, employees are inspired to seek satisfaction for their own ego and self-gratification.

However, the Skinner theory takes an arguably more positive approach, stating that positive reinforcement will lead to positive outcomes. Rather than choosing one theory or the other, it may be best for businesses to merge the two – offering employees rewards as well as recognition.

The Winnipeg Free Press highlights a few ways managers can acknowledge and reward staff members, including infusing the business with a sense of purpose and discipline. They can also promote positive interpersonal work relationships through out-of-office events and get-togethers.

One additional route to take when constructing an incentive program is to obtain feedback from staff members. By asking what they value and desire, companies can tailor programs for the greatest success.

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