Compensation Café

The Struggle Against Headwinds

Have you ever had a day at the office when everything went your way?  When management thought your ideas were inspired, your recommendations spot-on, and they smiled on you and said nice things about you? A day when everyone nodded their head at you? No?  Neither have I. Instead, what we all too... Read More

Cafe Classic: Holding Back an Increase

Editor's Note:  A Classic lesson from Jim Brennan on how denying a reward can change behavior in a way that positive incentives may not.  I'm better our readers have some experience in this realm too - when has "reward denial" worked (or not worked) for you?   More pay... Read More

If You Want Employees to Bet the Ranch, Hire Ranchers

I work with an amazing array of companies. They run from tiny to huge. From established to start-up. From staid and conservative to wild and innovative. As you may have guessed each of them have some very unique roles that must be populated with insane talent if the company is to succeed. This post... Read More

Compensation Force

Before You Put That Fundraiser on Commission...

Charitable donations are not sales and fundraisers are not salespeople.  The challenge is that there are many similarities that tempt us to treat these professionals - and to compensate them - in the same way.  As a result, the first response of many performance-oriented nonprofit leaders, Board... Read More

Can Employee Retention Be a Double Edged Sword?

Can employee retention be a double edged sword?  According to Merriam Webster, in addition to being a sword with two sharp edges, this is defined as something that can have both favorable and unfavorable consequences. That's about right. Or, as John Sumser of the HRExaminer has put... Read More

Pay Terminology and Communication Fails

I've had an important lesson reinforced for me.  I'm reminded again, via several recent conversations with employees and managers, of the wide range of definitions people hold for some very basic compensation terms. Think there is some level of agreement on what terms like... Read More

Hope, Unexpected Magic and Your Reward Plans

"Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things..." says Andy Dufresne, a character in the movie The Shawshank Redemption (based on a Stephen King novella), to his friend Red.  Hard to argue with that. I thought back to that line as I was reading Seth Godin's blog post today, titled... Read More