How to tee up the perfect incentive for your employees

John Lazarus, managing director, Executive Golf, considers golfing breaks to be the perfect incentive.

With companies still feeling the pinch and finding it difficult to reward staff with pay rises, employers are turning to staff incentives to recognise contributions and performance. The key to a successful incentive is finding the perfect reward. An incentive should appeal to staff and motivate them to achieve set goals.

Gift vouchers and cards are often used as incentive rewards but I feel these have little emotional value and do little to motivate staff, as they are soon forgotten about and, more often than not, are spent on day-to-day living expenses. ‘Tangible incentives’ – incentives that carry monetary value but are non-cash in nature – are now considered to be more effective in improving employee performance. This is because employees are more likely to work harder for a perceived luxury they may not be able to otherwise afford.

With this in mind, travel incentives and gift experiences have become popular rewards, as they boost employee motivation and morale by means of providing participants with memorable experiences outside of work. People love going on holiday and relaxing on the beach or by the pool, and these ‘feelgood’, aspirational thoughts are likely to generate excitement among colleagues, which creates a higher perceived value to the reward.

From a business point of view, incentive trips provide time out away from the office and the perfect opportunity to improve camaraderie between team members in a different setting. Away from the pressures of the office, employees have the chance to learn more about their colleagues and strengthen existing relationships, all of which will go some way to creating a happy and motivated workforce.

As employers turn to travel incentives, it’s not surprising that luxury golf packages to European destinations have become popular.

Golf trips are perfect for incentive rewards as they allow discerning golfers to experience new courses and experience competitive play while beginners are able to learn a new skill.

Regions such as The Algarve in Portugal are home to some of the most stunning golf courses in the world, and its mild climate makes it an ideal destination all year round.

Golf packages have become popular, not just for golfers looking for a weekend away to perfect their game and gain professional tuition, but for small groups and couples who want a relaxing weekend in the sun. Most golf resorts are not solely based around the greens and fairways, they also offer high-quality accommodation, fine dining and spa and leisure facilities.

There are many specialist golf travel companies that can create a tailored package according to your needs and budgets. They can arrange everything, including airport transfers, a comprehensive golf itinerary with preferential tee-times on some of the greatest golf courses, luxurious five-star accommodation and reservations at restaurants.

By managing every aspect of your itinerary, specialist operators will ensure your event is executed to perfection and guarantee a memorable experience for your staff. This will not only improve staff morale but deepen the psychological contract between you and your employees.

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