Tired of traditional employee rewards? Experiential employee rewards may be right for you company – but what are they? You can learn all about them right here.

Goodbye engraved plaques & pens.

Corporate reward and recognition programs have evolved significantly within the last five years. Millennial and Gen Z generations are taking over our workforce and are desiring more authentic, engaging recognition for their work. Many companies are incorporating experiential reward programs into their employee management tools, and organizations that provide these experiential rewards are not only creating loyal and satisfied teams, they are seeing a 63% increase in productivity.

So what is an experiential rewards program?

Experiential rewards programs help your employees create meaningful memories by facilitating their participation in choice-driven events. Instead of handing out forgettable swag, you make your organization the hero.

Let’s envision the following scenario…

Your five year anniversary with the company you’ve dedicated your time, energy and resources to is coming up within the next few weeks. Coworkers have begun to linger at your desk as they vent to you about their disappointment in the rewards they have received in the past. Everything from vague thank-you notes, gift cards to restaurants they don’t like, and of course, the matching engraved company plaque & pen. What you were originally looking forward to has become something that feels dull and meaningless. Their stories deflated your hopes for feeling genuinely appreciated and rewarded for reaching this great milestone. You thought you were making an impact in your organization, but maybe it’s time you start looking for another opportunity?

Successful organizations are nothing without their people, yet as companies grow, a meaningful rewards program becomes challenging to scale. There is no way you could possibly remember the likes and dislikes, anniversaries and birthdays, of every single employee you have. Memorable appreciation is the core solution to building a sound culture and high-performing team, but it remains overlooked because of the time and energy it seemingly takes to provide engaging rewards.

Within the last five years, experiential reward programs, like Wishlist, have become more and more popular. With reward automation, recipient choice, alignment of values, and program reporting, managing company rewards become easier to facilitate, while providing more meaning than ever before.

Dan Kasper, Wishlist’s CEO, is all-in for the cause of meaningful rewards & recognition. Here’s why –

Take 30 seconds and think of some of the best memories in your life. I’d make a bet that most, if not all of those memories involved experiences. It was that time you went sailing at sunset in the Mediterranean, the time you watched the sunrise from the top of a mountain or danced with your closest friends in the front row of your favorite concert. That is exactly why you choose experiential rewards. You, as a company, are facilitating something that will be ingrained with your employees their entire life. You will be a part of their story, and they will be a part of yours. Not to mention, people love to share stories. In this case, they will talk about their memory and be building your brand at the same time.

So where do you go from here?

At the end of the day, your team gives you their most valuable resource: time. The average employee spends over 90,000 hours working for you or someone else’s organization. Each day they step into work helping you build your mission and to scale your company. Investing in your employees is more than giving them a paycheck, it’s about making what’s important to them important to you. Thanking them is more than sending them a basic thank-you card, it’s providing them with opportunities for personal growth. Meaningful, memorable reward programs demonstrate that your people are uniquely valuable and their dedication to go above and beyond is noticed and appreciated.