We have entered a new era of employee engagement: where monetary rewards alone fail to drive employee satisfaction and motivation. Today’s employees are looking for more than just a job: they’re looking for a meaningful and rewarding career.
The power of experiential rewards and recognition is undeniable when creating this type of environment. Research shows that they help boost employee engagement and satisfaction – and the ROI speaks for itself. We will dive deeper into the science behind them below.
First, let’s define experiential rewards and recognition: these are non-material or non-monetary incentives that focus on providing employees with meaningful experiences rather than traditional tangible rewards. These rewards are designed to engage employees on a deeper level by offering opportunities for personal growth, skill development, and memorable experiences.
- piano lesson
- skydiving class
- tickets to a concert
- gift certificate for a massage
The key to success is to find an experience that would be meaningful to the particular employee, in order to make them feel valued and recognized.
The Science Behind Experiential Rewards and Employee Engagement:
Research shows that experiential rewards are more memorable and meaningful than monetary rewards. They can help to boost employee engagement, productivity, morale, motivation, and job satisfaction. Let’s dive into the science:
Experiential rewards tap into our intrinsic motivation. According to a study by Ryan and Deci (2000), intrinsic rewards foster a genuine sense of enjoyment and fulfillment in the workplace. Here are some examples of intrinsic rewards from their research:
- personalized outings
- team-building activities
- learning opportunities
When employees are motivated by internal drivers, their engagement soars, leading to improved performance and dedication.
Employee Engagement and Job Satisfaction:
A study by Breevaart et al. (2016) found that positive work events, including experiential rewards, have a profound impact on employee engagement, job satisfaction, and commitment.
Experiences create lasting memories that transcend the transactional nature of monetary incentives. When employees feel valued, appreciated, and emotionally connected to their organization through meaningful experiences, their engagement and loyalty intensify.
Fostering Meaning and Purpose:
As we’ve already discussed, employees crave purpose and meaning in their work. Experiential rewards play a pivotal role in cultivating a sense of purpose, fostering engagement, and inspiring employees to give their best. A study by Rosso, Dekas, and Wrzesniewski (2010), demonstrates that experiential rewards provide employees with opportunities to develop new skills, collaborate with colleagues, and contribute to a greater cause.
These experiences result in increased motivation, satisfaction, and loyalty. When employees find meaning in their work and have opportunities to grow and make a difference, their engagement and commitment skyrocket.
The ROI of Experiential Rewards speaks for itself:
Engaged employees not only experience greater job satisfaction but also drive organizational success. Extensive research conducted by Harter, Schmidt, and Hayes (2002) reveals a strong correlation between employee engagement and financial performance.
By prioritizing experiential rewards, you can cultivate a highly engaged workforce that directly impacts your bottom line. Engaged employees go above and beyond, leading to increased productivity, customer satisfaction, and ultimately, improved business outcomes.
Unlocking Employee Engagement with Wishlist:
Now that you understand the power of experiential rewards, it’s time to take advantage of the undeniable science behind these employee engagement strategies. At Wishlist, our goal is to deliver meaningful rewards and moments – individualizing the gifting process and applying principles of effective gifts in your personal life to the corporate environment.
We provide employers with personalized gift and reward options for every employee, helping build stronger bonds between managers and their teams. Our comprehensive solution simplifies the implementation of experiential rewards, relieving the administrative burden of such programs and empowering you to effortlessly create memorable experiences for your employees.
Ready to take your employee engagement programs to the next level? Fill out the form below and we will show you what Wishlist can do for your organization: