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The Work Itself as a Source of Reward and Punishment on the Job

Rewards and Punishment that may come from the work itself.
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Through a series of workshops & 1 on 1 coaching & development with a management team. A decision was made to agree that recognition of achievement was the strongest motivator for success & that each manager had to work on the system itself to reinforce what should happen.

This forced us to face the work in theory vs. the work in practice and reveal evidence that many of the managers still believed in the KITA Kick In The Ass method.

In an effort to change this we identified the following:

systems-Drive-Behavior

Rewards and punishment to people in their roles at work come from three sources.

  • The Work Itself
  • Fellow Workers
  • The Manager

The Work Itself

Positive Consequences

Negative Consequences

Making progress on personally meaningful work.

Achievement unencumbered by unnecessary obstacles, setbacks, etc..

Solving challenging problems that come from the work itself.

Improving how the work gets done, making it easier to accomplish the task.

Making minimal errors in the work.

External recognition from a customer “Thanks! You solved my problem”

Seeing the positive impact their work has on others

Consistent set-backs & changes to the work.

Feeling forced to complete a task that you know will be scrapped or rejected.

Management changes & resources being removed, making it impossible to accomplish the task.

Having to deal with obstacles that should be handled by their immediate manager.

Being yelled at by customers and / or those that are part of their work

Limited chance for improvement of how the work gets done. Being told “Do it this way & stop trying to change things”

 

The Work Itself as a Source of Reward and Punishment of the Job Create Learning Team Building and Leadership

We took the examples above and developed real examples from the jobs of when people received recognition & reward from the work itself, plus when they felt deterred by the work itself.

From those stories we began to change how the work was done, policies & procedures, and performance support for the managers and people.

What do you think?

Share how your work is rewarding or punishing? What should be added to the positive consequences? What should be added to the negative consequences?

Team Building Leadership Innovation expert Michael Cardus

michael cardus is create-learning

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