Your Two Cents
We all bring a unique perspective to the world, from the companies and organizations we work for to our families and communities. Our life experiences and the paths we take form a wholly distinctive context from which we develop our own world views.
The incentives, rewards and recognition industry is no exception, and the view that I bring as a journalist, technically "residing" slightly outside of the industry, is completely different from what your view might be. And your view might be different depending on whether you're working in the field or selling incentive solutions. Further, if you're working in the field, your view is going to be different if you're working for HR, or if you're the owner of your business, or if you're in sales or marketing or [insert job function here].
This month, we feature a guest column from such a practitioner, writing on new developments in the field of enterprise engagement. It's an interesting read, providing some background on the development of new standards for the field, as well as a foundation on which to build further development and use of those standards.
Interestingly, though, I found myself wondering what all you readers out there think about this:
"The incentive and recognition field can achieve greater results for its clients and impact on the marketplace if it puts the emphasis on helping organizations develop truly effective, measurable programs that make an emotional connection and tell a meaningful story over time."
Thinking back over more than 10 years of editing and writing and assigning stories for PIP, my gut tells me that most of the people I've come across who are working in the incentive and recognition field are not really just focused on selling "things." Rather, the industry and the associations that support it put an emphasis on best practices in incenting, rewarding and recognizing various audiences. And while finding the most appropriate reward(s) for a given audience is important, it's only one small piece of a big puzzle that also involves effective communications, savvy planning and careful measurement to determine results.
Just flipping through the pages of this issue, I see stories focusing on how to create an effective ROI analysis and then use that analysis to improve future efforts, as well as on avoiding common pitfalls in incentives and rewards—only one of which is getting the reward mix wrong. Of course, we also talk about the stuff—cameras and gift cards, luggage and luxury items—but that's with an understanding that you need to know what's out there that will work.
I am curious to know what you think, dear reader. What do you think the industry has gotten right, and where do you think it can improve?