Expectations vs. Reality: Rewards and Recognition

Being a Total Rewards Specialist is not easy. I’m going to admit that. The day I became a Compensation & Benefits professional, my manager tried to manage my expectations from the role I took with one sentence:

“From this day on, you’re going to be the second most hated guy in this company; guess what? The first one is me.”

Well, somehow it was exciting… Like I express it every time; “I was on the dark side!”… But it’s not easy…

I might hear you ask the question: Why?

The reason that I tell all these are being aside of both employer and employee at the same time is such an exhausting and stressful job. Imagine yourself fighting in a war but in two opposite fronts (excuse my example).

The main reason of existence as a “Total Rewards” professional is directly linked to the main definition of it: Attract, retain and motivate talents with adequate tools and resources. So, to stay objective at all times is in its nature.

The latest study of Towers Watson showed us how much the hardship can extend: Almost 3 to 4 the top 7 drivers in attracting and retaining talents are different from employers’ and employees’ point of view. Some examples which differ are: Job Security, Trust/Confidence in Senior Leadership, and Length of commute…

Now; let’s think about it. As an employer you think that you need to do as high priority seven things to attract and retain the top talents who you think that is going to add value to your business objectives and carry your organization to higher levels, targets etc. On the contrary, the employee thinks that half of them are worthless and they just would like to be exposed to way other drivers. IT’S CRUCIAL.

It’s been long time that Compensation & Benefits, Rewards, Remuneration etc. was just seen as administering payroll and paying some cash allowances, but as the world changes and the globalization gets more important, the drivers for intrinsic and extrinsic motivation change at the same time. This crucial problem shows us that we have to change how we handle rewarding our employees. We need to be up-to-date in employee communication, effective in conducting it and use the “big umbrella” of Total Rewards to reach them.

The one and only reality is (although everybody thinks that it’s the most important driver for everything) that deep down there it’s not about only money…


Original post was published on Linkedin on August 28th, 2014.

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