Big Red Car here. Super Bowl Sunday, ya’ll. Hope you have a great time.
Low clouds, windy, 45F and going to get colder as the day progresses — a damn good day to huddle around the fire and watch the Super Bowl. This is what passes for winter in the ATX.
A few months ago the InterWeb was all atwitter about the development of company culture. We talked about it here.
We discussed the notion that part of any robust company culture was the opportunity to create a powerful talisman signifying the type of behavior one wants to see repeated in their company. We spoke in terms of trophies.
A slight variation on this theme is the opportunity to harness the idea of impact rewards as a tool to inoculate the company with behaviors which are desired to be repeated. This is based on the simple idea that what is rewarded will be observed and repeated by others.
I will call this Impact Rewards. [Hey, Big Red Car, you already called it impact awards. Pay attention, please. STFU, Big Red Car.]
When you fail to do this, you miss an opportunity to reinforce such behavior.
An example of this missed behavior is when you miss the opportunity to identify, acknowledge and reinforce the “firsts” in your company.
WTF is a “first”, Big Red Car?
A specific example might be the first substantial sale by a new salesperson.
Or the first investment banking “cradle to grave” deal wherein the young investment banker — having obtained all of his licenses, no small undertaking — pitches a deal, makes the book, gets the assignment, prepares the docs, works with the sales syndicate, gets the deal sold and then closes the deal.
In both of these examples, the company wants this behavior to be repeated, repeated and repeated. And why the Hell not?
Hey, Big Red Car, how do we “do” this?
Oh, Grasshopper, you already know how to do it.
1. Create a talisman which has a trophy quality to it. Such as an eagle head or some other “hood ornament of life” type trophy. This way when someone else sees it the legend spreads and multiplies.
2. Add a bit of an emolument — that just means something of value — to it like a nice little check or gift card.
3. Don’t miss the opportunity to create something that will also be seen, acknowledge and appreciated by a spouse. This will multiply the positive benefits — trust me on this one. [Why the Big Red Car likes restaurant gift cards.]
It is really just that damn simple. It just takes a thimbleful of thoughtfulness to make it work like a champ.
And, as we well know, you are a very thoughtful CEO, right?
Catch someone doing something good. Give them an impact reward. Multiply and inculcate good behaviors — desirable behaviors — in your company and build a robust company culture. Or, you could get a foosball machine and a keg of beer. Your choice.