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Most Employee “Rewards” Programs = Employee “Sedentary” Programs


By Greta Roberts, CEO
Talent Analytics, Corp.

Business Leaders.  Get a backbone!

I’m so sick and tired of leadership pundits saying that in 2011 businesses need to do more to keep their employees “happy”. Please!

I love people.  I love employees.  Anyone that knows me will tell you that.  But mostly I love successful businesses and energized, overachieving employees.

To use a basketball analogy —- can you imagine a basketball team saying that in 2011 the focus needs to be on making the talent happy?

  • Give the players a little more money than they were expecting
  • Let them play any position they want
  • Let them take some time off because work life balance has been very tough this past year.
  • Give them longer breaks – less workouts per week.

Is there any doubt about the outcome?

We’re not making basketball players (or employees) “happy” we’re making them sedentary.  We’re taking away challenges, taking away a focus on absolute perfection.

I don’t want “happy, sedentary” employees.  I want inspired, focused, challenged employees.  I want employees to move on if they are a horrible fit for their role.  They know it – you know it.  It’s time for some tough love.

I want us to reward employees for performance – not hope performance goes up if I give them something nice now.

Most of the talk around “employee reward programs” is really trying to figure out how to bribe employees to stay with your firm. Bribes are ineffective and a cop out for not knowing your talent and what position they can play that will stretch them to be the best they can be.

Business leaders. Get a backbone.   Do the right thing.  Make talent strategic in your organization.  Stop making talent a “program”.  Use talent analytics to understand your “most valuable assets” like you say you do.  Understand where they can be stretched to be a top performer.  If they’re in the right role they’ll love the stretch.

Most Employee “Rewards” Programs = Employee “Sedentary” Programs.




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