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Non-financial rewards improve participation in reward programs

Non-financial rewards serve as continual reminders of past success, and can encourage new participants to join programs.

Wellness regimens and other employee reward programs have helped businesses increase their productivity. However, many firms still struggle with engaging workers and generating participation in the initiatives.

There are several factors that can contribute to employees not getting involved in wellness programs or other company initiatives, but one of the most influential components is the rewards that businesses offer when employees achieve goals. NPR reports that a large number of firms provide cash incentives for participants in corporate wellness programs. These typically take the form of reduced insurance premiums, which means that employees rarely see the benefits of their hard work.

A little extra cash on hand is helpful for paying bills and covering expenses, but after the initial excitement wears off there is no additional motivation for workers. Businesses interested in boosting participation and seeing better results from employee reward programs should consider non-financial rewards. These can be in support of cash rewards for wellness programs, to provide longer-lasting motivation. For instance, employees who are participating in a lunchtime walking program could be rewarded with new shoes, water bottles or a pedometer when they meet weight-loss goals. Each time participants use their new rewards, they are reminded of their accomplishments and encouraged to continue walking.

Non-financial rewards serve as continual reminders of past success, and can encourage new participants to join programs. Seeing a co-worker receive a new iPad from the company helps inspire others to set and meet personal goals. By using a mix of rewards, organizations can appeal to a broader range of people. Today's workforce is a mix of demographics and generations. Not everyone is motivated the same way, but allowing employees to choose from a range of merchandise can ensure that everyone is working toward something they desire.

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