Top Employee Incentive Programs For Small Business

There are many employee incentive programs for small businesses. Business owners implement these programs to increase employee satisfaction, productivity, and engagement. Investing time, money, and effort into developing incentive programs significantly lowers costs and increases profit margins due to more productive employees. As a business manager, there are several employee programs that can be implemented at little to no cost. Read on to discover the top employee incentive programs for small business.

Dress-Down Days

One employee incentive program that’s free to implement is dress-down days. Depending on your industry, you may need a somewhat strict dress code for regular client meetings. Businesses with few client meetings increase employee engagement by offering casual dress days. This way, your employees save money on office wear or on implementing employee uniforms. Businesses that do regularly meet with clients can also take advantage of this program with strategic placement of dress-down days when there are few clients scheduled. Surely, dress-down days provide your employees with more savings, increasing their company satisfaction and engagement at no cost to you.

Kudos Boards

Kudos boards are a second employee incentive program that highlights employee accomplishments and rewards them accordingly. Create one by hanging a bulletin board, with accessible sticky notes, somewhere in your facility, such as a break room. Then, encourage employees to post their coworkers’ achievements as well as their own. This way, you are aware of many employee accomplishments that would have otherwise gone unnoticed. At the end of a time period determined by you, such as a week or month, gather the posted achievements and reward your favorites. These rewards are up to your discretion, and can range from gift cards, days off, remote work, or more. Absolutely, creating a Kudos board incentivizes employees to go above and beyond while simultaneously providing you with a record of their accomplishments.

Free Food

Providing free food in your facility’s kitchen is a great way to incentivize employees. Treating employees to high-quality food for free surely increases their morale and engagement. You can choose to provide the food on a regular basis, such as every Friday, or for meeting targets such as sales goals. Additionally, the procurement of the food provides many business opportunities, depending on your industry. The businesses providing the food, such as those in the fast food industry, will see you and your business as valued customers, opening up networking opportunities. You might even be able to get the food at a discounted rate. Of course, providing free food to your employees incentivizes them to meet goals and enables business-to-business relationships.

Pets At Work

Allowing employees to reasonably bring their pets to work is another great incentive program that’s completely free. Interacting with animals increases dopamine levels, leading to more productive employees. Those with pets will often jump at any opportunity to show their pets to others and have them interact with other pets. Even those without pets of their own benefit from interacting with their coworkers’ pets. However, there are a few precautions to take. Someone may be allergic, and un-or-minimally-trained animals may present legal liabilities. If you work in the food industry, this incentive can’t be used due to animals presenting huge health risks when manufacturing food products. Therefore, use your discretion when implementing this program to minimize liabilities and risks. Certainly, bringing pets to work is a free incentive that greatly improves productivity, but requires thought and regulation.

Learning And Professional Development Programs

Implementing professional development and other learning programs has a significant impact on employee performance. These programs are valuable for both employer and employee, as better trained employees serve their employers better. The employee also benefits because they’re getting better at their job, increasing their role satisfaction. Additionally, more robust training under their belt helps their marketability for future employment. This way, your employees know they are valued as an individual, beyond just their time with your company. You can implement online technical training programs as well to get started if you are working remotely. Indubitably, implementing learning and professional development programs provides you with better employees and your employees with better skill sets.

There is a myriad of employee incentive programs for small businesses. One such program is dress down days, a free option that saves your employees money. Another option is creating a Kudos board to track your employee’s accomplishments and rewarding them accordingly at your discretion. Providing free food incentivizes your employees by saving them money and enables strong business relationships with local eateries. Implementing a day or so for employees to bring pets to work is another free program that will increase productivity across the board, but requires forethought. Finally, professional development programs increase employee quality and helps them feel valued at your company. When wondering about the top employee incentive programs for your small business, consider the programs described above.

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