Do more than throw them a bone

Bone It is one of the most powerful and most overlooked marketing truths out there. Employees that feel appreciated will do the same for your clients.  Lisa Cieslica, from JobPoint makes the point that sometimes a sincere “thank you” can be the best incentive around.  But if you want to go beyond that…here are some other ideas.

  • Let them decide:  The CEO of 1-800-GOT-JUNK asks his employees for 101 life goals.  When someone exceeds his expectations and he wants to reward them, he looks for ways to help them get closer to one of those life goals.
  • Don’t forget their families:  When one of your team has been putting in a lot of extra hours and effort, or been on the road for a while, why not send a thank you note or gift to their family?
  • It doesn’t have to be big:  Employees love creative coupons that can be redeemed for a long lunch, or a half day Friday.

No matter what you do, make sure you couple it with Cieslica’s suggestion – a genuine thank you.  That’s sweet music to anyone’s ears.

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4 comments on “Do more than throw them a bone

  1. I’d add one caveat to this … the thank you needs to match the value of the contribution.

    When I was an Acct Executive for a DM firm (last job before I opened my own shop almost 20 years ago), I landed a big new account with national name recognition. At the time the account was easily worth $100,000 for the first year.

    The big boss came into my office with big smiles and a mylar balloon for me. I thanked him for the balloon and asked about a bonus.

    He stopped smiling. The balloon was my thanks … and that I got to keep my job.


  2. Roberta,

    Indeed — if the thank you feels more like a slap in the face, it not only doesn’t help — it hurts.

    Those are difficult wounds to heal.


  3. Oh, don’t cry for me, Drew McLellan (Gosh, that just worked so beautifully into my mental singing.)

    BossMan did me a favor. I was so out of there six months later and never looked back. (I just couldn’t believe he thought the balloon was like, um, enough :=)

    Hope the Mouse’s House is making you and yours joyful!

  4. Roberta,

    You may be the first person to mentally sing to my blog! I often find that the moments we think are among our worst are in fact some of our best.

    They often serve as the foot we needed on our rear end. It’s the boost of courage to do what we wanted/needed to do but couldn’t quite pull the trigger.

    I don’t know about you, but for me, some of my worst days are the days I should be most thankful for.


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