How To Reward and Engage Non-Commission Employees

It’s easy to use compensation to motivate some employees—especially those whose roles are performance-based or work for commission. But how do you put fire under the seat of those who aren’t in commission-based, numbers-oriented roles at your company?

Are big bonuses enough to drive high performance for those employees? Will a yearly check that’s really based on company performance and not the individual employee’s performance be enough to change that individual’s work?

Delving into that question a little further, how do you put the timing of those bonuses in place? Yearly? Monthly? What schedule will inspire them and bring out the best in them at work, day-to-day?

I know, lots of questions.

One opinion is that having more frequent, smaller rewards is better to engage non-commission employees. But to do this, you have to have a neatly packaged way of measuring their performance, and most likely, will have to tailor it to individuals and their specific role.

A deterrent of initiating regular rewards is that the employee may become dependent on them, and hesitate when it comes to establishing new ideas or processes in their role for fear it might be taken away if that innovation doesn’t coincide with their incentive-based program. Creativity could become stifled and there you have it—the role is spelled out with numbers instead of it being wide open to change and improvement—and could even stifle an employee’s autonomy.

What do you think? Is the yearly bonus the best way to go about rewarding these types of roles?