Numerous studies and surveys have documented the fact that money is not always the primary motivator for most employees. At times it may be a strong consideration for taking on a role but it won’t keep your employees long term.
I believe in simply recognising your people frequently for their good work and there is a good chance they will repeat the performance frequently. However praise must be sincere and should be distributed equitably, if warranted. When possible, praise people publicly in meetings or employee newsletters this will give it more weight and increase your sincerity. Be sure to give employee’s credit and rewards for good ideas that benefit the company. Reinforce the right behaviors. Avoid saying “Great but.”
In larger organisations look for key measures to recognize employees, such as production, client retention rate, loyalty etc. Come up with contests to recognize your employees, such as the most referrals for another service you offer, or the most new clients brought in. Give recognition certificates, plaques and prizes rather than money. Tickets for concerts, sporting events, gift certificates for merchandise or dinner are always appreciated more than cash. Also giving something tangible makes a more lasting impression.
Praising your best performers (the top 25%) will raise the bar for your lesser performers. The goal is to encourage behaviors that build your business and recognize your people for practicing those behaviors as often as possible.
Try it and let me know how you go!