What Creative Incentives Motivate Employees to Exceed Performance Targets?


    What Creative Incentives Motivate Employees to Exceed Performance Targets?

    In the quest to inspire peak performance, we've gathered six inventive strategies from CEOs and HR professionals. From implementing profit-sharing with team-driven initiatives to establishing a public recognition board for outstanding efforts, discover the unique incentives these leaders employ to encourage their teams to surpass performance targets.

    • Profit-Sharing with Team-Driven Initiatives
    • Monthly 'Innovation Day' for Passion Projects
    • Special Events to Celebrate Milestones
    • Offer Free Lunch as Performance Perk
    • Skill Swap Program for Achievers
    • Public Recognition Board for Outstanding Efforts

    Profit-Sharing with Team-Driven Initiatives

    At Deepler, I’ve introduced a unique incentive to motivate employees to exceed performance targets: we allocate one-third of the company’s profit to initiatives chosen by the teams themselves. At the end of each year, employees post their ideas and vote on how this money should be spent. This approach not only drives performance but also fosters a sense of ownership and community within the company.

    By giving employees the power to decide how a significant portion of the profits is reinvested, we ensure that the incentives are meaningful and aligned with their needs. This could mean funding professional development programs, enhancing workplace amenities, or organizing team-building activities and events.

    The impact has been substantial. Employees feel more engaged and valued, knowing their contributions directly influence the company’s success and how the rewards are distributed. It creates a positive feedback loop where the motivation to perform well is reinforced by tangible, collectively-decided benefits. Obviously, this is aligned with our belief that decisions should be made based on the collective intelligence of our teams.

    This democratic approach enhances transparency and trust within the organization. Teams collaborate to come up with innovative ideas, discuss their merits, and make decisions that benefit everyone. It strengthens interdepartmental relationships and promotes a culture of collective intelligence and shared success.

    Stijn van der Vat
    Stijn van der VatCEO & Founder, Deepler

    Monthly 'Innovation Day' for Passion Projects

    I've found that hosting a monthly 'Innovation Day' where employees can work on passion projects outside of their usual tasks is a great way to motivate them to exceed performance targets. This not only fosters creativity and collaboration but also gives employees a sense of ownership and autonomy in their work, leading to increased motivation and productivity. Plus, who doesn't love a break from the daily grind to work on something they're truly passionate about?

    Alex Stasiak
    Alex StasiakCEO & Founder, Startup House

    Special Events to Celebrate Milestones

    As a business manager, I’ve found that celebrating milestones is an effective and creative incentive to inspire employees to surpass performance targets. Rather than merely acknowledging achievements, we organize special events or gatherings to recognize significant accomplishments. For instance, when our sales team exceeded quarterly revenue goals, we hosted a celebratory luncheon where team members received personalized certificates and heartfelt commendations.

    This approach creates a sense of camaraderie, reinforces the value of hard work, and motivates employees to strive for excellence. By creating a positive work environment through such celebrations, we encourage consistent high performance and reinforce our commitment to recognizing and appreciating our team’s efforts.

    Perry Zheng
    Perry ZhengFounder, Cash Flow Portal

    Offer Free Lunch as Performance Perk

    One creative incentive I've used to motivate employees to exceed performance targets is offering free lunch. It might seem simple, but it's incredibly effective. By providing a daily or weekly free lunch, we created a positive and enjoyable work environment. This not only saved employees money but also gave them a chance to relax and get closer with colleagues during breaks. The promise of a decent meal became a fun and motivating perk, leading to increased productivity and team cohesion. Plus, it showed our appreciation for their hard work, encouraging them to continue exceeding performance targets.

    James Edge
    James EdgeCEO, Beyond The States

    Skill Swap Program for Achievers

    We introduced a 'Skill Swap' program in which employees who achieved the above target goals could book one-on-one mentoring with another team member and learn the skill of their choice.

    Investing the company's own time in people helped boost performance considerably. This process actually required people to learn from others on a daily basis, and there was a much better atmosphere as employees realized their employer invested in their personal development, rather than seeing them as expendable workers.

    The 'Skill Swap' program led to a considerable increase in performance because employees were keen to make their targets so they could participate. It also led to a significant increase in engagement as people felt they were in an organization that encouraged them to keep learning.

    Sunaree Komolchomalee
    Sunaree KomolchomaleeHead of Human Resources, Cupid Digital PR Agency

    Public Recognition Board for Outstanding Efforts

    As the founder of a legal process outsourcing company, I've found that fostering a culture of recognition and appreciation is essential for motivating employees to exceed performance targets. One creative incentive we implemented was a "Recognition Board" where exceptional achievements were celebrated publicly within the team.

    Inspired by real-life experiences, such as when one of our team members dedicated extra hours to ensure a crucial deposition summarization project was delivered ahead of schedule, we introduced this initiative to spotlight outstanding efforts and contributions.

    Employees were encouraged to nominate their peers for recognition, fostering a sense of camaraderie and appreciation. Not only did this incentive boost morale and motivation, but it also cultivated a supportive work environment where everyone felt valued and inspired to excel.

    Aseem Jha
    Aseem JhaFounder, Legal Consulting Pro