People have different ways of dealing with problems and overseeing their employees. Some people believe that the best way to get something done is by having punishments for failure (the metaphorical stick). Some say it works better to encourage one’s workers by giving them incentives and rewards (also known as the carrot). There are many good reasons to use either a stick or a carrot when you want to get something done, but there are also some bad things about using them.
Wielding a Stick
The idea of using the stick is to have consequences for not doing something or doing something poorly. It may seem like a good idea to threaten people with punishment if they do not follow through with what they are asked to do so that people learn that not doing something well will have consequences. But this doesn’t always work. When people know that there is some kind of punishment for not producing, they become stressed and fear losing their jobs or being worse off. Rather than doing good work with this worry, they may try to sneak by and pass the work onto someone else.
People also sometimes forget that when they punish someone for doing something wrong, others could have done the same thing but not have been punished. People will become disgruntled with their managers when they feel as if they are not being treated fairly. This will cause problems for the manager trying to get work done, which may lead to a poor relationship between the boss and his employees.
Rewarding with Carrots
The idea of using incentives works well when someone wants to get something high-quality done. There is a tendency for people to cooperate with someone that has a positive attitude toward them, and treating your employees well can go a long way. If you wish to treat your employees like they are already part of your family, then you might want to reward those who have done something well by giving them incentives. This will help the company achieve its goals more quickly than it might have otherwise.
Being kind to your employees and developing a relationship with them can be very beneficial. This way, people will do their best to work well together, but at the same time, they will not feel like they are being forced to do anything that conflicts with their morals and values. It’s also useful to put tools in place that help your employees reward each other with positive feedback, incentives, and group goals. Employee engagement software is a great way to track these sorts of things.
Make sure the rewards are actually rewarding to the person receiving them. Some people don’t like carrots, so offering them one won’t be very incentivizing. It’s better to provide something that is genuinely valuable to the person. Also, make sure you give your employees time to enjoy their rewards. People who are rushed will appreciate their rewards less, which means they will have a harder time working toward future incentives.
Tying it Together
The best way to tie these two ideas together is by using both of them simultaneously. People will be far less likely to misbehave if they know that there will be a negative consequence for doing so, but there may also be incentives involved if they do the right thing. If an employee does a stellar job with something they have been given the responsibility for, then rewards can be given to them to show that they did well.
This way, they will feel good about what they are doing and continue on their path to greatness. And if they are informed of possible punishments, fear will lead them to work hard toward their prescribed goals. This way, you won’t have any problems trying to get something done, and you won’t scare away the good employees, leaving you with no one to help the business.
The most important thing is to treat your employees well and make sure they can trust you because if they don’t feel like they can be honest with you, you will never get the job done.