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Melissa DeAngelo
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Great example from Staples of an incentive program that truly aims to motivate! I especially like the idea of designating a referee to not only motivate, but also to help hold us accountable for our goals. It is much harder to make excuses for not getting stuff done when there is someone else there to question/prod us along. I know I am much more motivated and less likely to make excuses when I know that I am not just accountable to myself for meeting/exceeding goals, but when others on my team hold me accountable as well.
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I'm totally with you on these poorly designed incentive programs. While I think we need to have goals to strive toward and reaching/exceeding those goals should be rewarded in some way, allowing people to partially meet their goals and still be rewarded defeats the purpose. In order for goals to be effective, they need to be attainable without employees having to chip in for the rest of what they weren't able to achieve through work. What good does it do to set high goals if people never reach them? It seems more beneficial to set reasonable goals that are still a challenge, but employees can meet them and managers can show off how great their employees are for having done so. Managers should not only be held accountable for setting high goals, but also for whether their employees are able to meet their goals. This might provide more incentive for managers to set more realistic goals allowing for these incentive programs to be more effective.
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Great post on leadership communication. Unfortunately I have often found myself in these types of meetings (and classes) where the speaker just goes on and on leaving me to wonder why I am even there. I appreciate the way that you point out that this is symptomatic of ineffective communication skills from the leader. Effective communicators understand the they cannot control others, so it is up to them to adapt to the audience if they want to really get their point across. I also think that it is powerful to recognize that this does not necessarily mean being direct and to the point, but it requires being able to read the communication styles of the audience and working with that information to build trust/influence. I don't think this is an easy skill for everyone to develop, but it is essential to successful communication.
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Mar 8, 2010