Incentive Compensation for Contractors - Culture

How does culture factor in the success or failure of incentive programs?

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Contributors Sue Weiler-Doke David Brown

As Stephen Covey wrote: “Start with the end in mind,” but make sure the end starts with aligning on the lowest common denominator for motivation – “What’s in it for me?” 

It is a given that any incentive program should improve the operating execution, profit, and cash flow of the company. However, aligning organizational objectives with the tangible value add to the craft worker in the field and operations related staff workers yields the best results. Higher pay in one form or another is almost always part of the equation. However, it is only part of the equation. 

Deep understanding of how the individuals on your team are motivated leads to understanding the overall sentiment trend of your team, with respect to creating effective incentive programs. That, in turn, brings clarity to, with respect to the most beneficial behaviors that individuals at every level should execute to deliver maximum value to themselves, to the company, and to the customer.

A lot can be done with the culture in the right state of mind. Take a look at your culture and incentive programs and ask these questions:

  • Does your incentive program encompass all things that are important?
  • How is this benefiting our customers, employees, and coworkers? Understand what you want to address within the organization.
    • Get people as a culture to think about that.
    • When people are thinking about just not themselves but who else’s lives are positively impacted from this, including customers, vendors, and other employees, the incentive program and goals are well-aligned.

The culture of your company should be actively aligned with the same vision.


In this video series, Courtney Stearns, Sue Weiler-Doke, and David Brown discuss the most common questions we get from contractors about incentive programs, including a bunch of great questions from the audience.

This is Part 12 of a 20-Part Series


Topics Covered in the Series Include:

  • Types of Programs
  • Succession
  • Prerequisites
  • Behaviors
  • Next Steps

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