Workstars’ top 20 time and activity rewards from 2016

Ever thought the reward, in reward and recognition, is failing to hit the spot? Well, you are not alone. There is growing evidence to show that valuing time over money is associated with greater happiness. Some stand out research has recently come from the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, which leaves many within the employee recognition industry with an interesting question. Should the reward within any reward and recognition program be solely financial and material?

This approach has traditionally been thought to make us happy, or be a reasonable “thank you” for a job well done.

But is there another way, is there a strong argument for rewards to also be focussed on time and activities, and an employee’s wellbeing and happiness?

This is the research summary:

How do the trade-offs that we make about two of our most valuable resources—time and money—shape happiness? While past research has documented the immediate consequences of thinking about time and money, research has not yet examined whether people’s general orientations to prioritise time over money are associated with greater happiness.

In the current research, we develop the Resource Orientation Measure (ROM) to assess people’s stable preferences to prioritise time over money. Next, using data from students, adults recruited from the community, and a representative sample of employed Americans, we show that the ROM is associated with greater well-being. These findings could not be explained by materialism, material striving, current feelings of time or material affluence, or demographic characteristics such as income or marital status. Across six studies (N ¼ 4,690), we provide the first empirical evidence that prioritising time over money is a stable preference related to greater subjective well-being.

Workstars believe both the approach to employee recognition and the nature of reward is all up for debate in the quest for greater employee engagement and wellbeing. In 2015 we began a development cycle to create the ideas and functionality that would allow for a new type of reward, one which would complement the financial methods we have. We focussed on giving employees time and activity rewards that cost a little, but mean a lot.

We are pleased to say HR, managers and employees love this new approach. So we thought we would share the top 20 rewards given by managers in 2016.

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vote work