Be Careful Which Behaviours You Reward
Making Use of Rewards and Incentives to Change Behaviour
When it comes to managing a business, team or department the rewarding of good performance and behaviour can condition those workers to perform like that as a norm.
Reinforcing positive behaviour and actions can lead to a repeat in the hope of another reward in the future and has been a proven technique over the years for training of both workers and animals alike. It is one of the most effective and powerful strategies that can be employed in order to raise the performance of employees, which is why it is discussed on many business coaching and executive coaching sessions with those in charge as a means to overcome issues with the workforce.
Using This Method Too Often Can Lead to Problems in the Future
This power and ability to alter behaviours means that those in charge need to be careful to exercise caution and restraint in its use. Over-use leads to a loss of effectiveness and an expectation by employees that they should receive a reward or incentive every single time they are asked to do something at work, and can place a significant financial burden on the company as they need to fund these bonus and reward schemes.
Rewarding Poor Performance
However apart from the cost, one of the most potentially damaging consequences that can come with being too free and easy with reward schemes is that it may inadvertently reward poor or mediocre working practices and methods if bonuses are handed out without requiring too much effort or hard work to achieve.
This can be a particular issue with group or team bonuses, where some individuals may not be assisting the team as much as they could be - although in their defence it is often inadvertent - but are still credited with a reward. Without being told or pulled up on it, these workers are likely to carry on as they are and doing the same thing if they receive the bonus anyway.