In a recent post I shared the story of how $5 gift cards motivated multimillionaire angel investors to do work that helped their angel group a great deal – but that they had never bothered to do before. I also asked about creating levels of engagement for angels.
What follows is a simple brainstorm of some non-financial (or essentially non-financial) rewards that might act like those $5 gift cards. As always, your suggestions are greatly welcomed.
- Scoreboards – People love to be #1. ESPECIALLY the kind of people who will serve as our mentors. So let’s make a scoreboard for each of the major activities: 1) recruitment&retention and 2) leading deals. At each meeting we have a portion where the relevant scoreboard is displayed on the wall. We draw people’s attention to it. We heap praise on the top performers at each meeting – put their pictures on the wall.
- Badges With Data! – At conferences name badges carry not only name & company, they often have ribbons, stickers, and/or additional panels that communicate other info. Why not use this to let us brag about someone doing great work for the group? By putting it front and center on their name badge in some way people will take note, will remember they should be doing it, new people will ask questions and learn cultural norms of ACTION, etc. Maybe badges get a ribbon (or classy sticker, if such exist) for each deal you lead. Maybe the color of the badge indicates how many members you have recruited.
- Responsibilities – People like responsibility if presented to them the right way. Do it the wrong way and it is WORK. The military does this well. The most junior officer at a British naval dinner must make the first toast of the evening. The trick is to design and communicate duties in such a way as to make them honors, traditions, and ceremonies without being pompous.
- Simple rewards – This is the $5 starbucks cards category. We should think about simple, enjoyable awards that we can give out. Starbucks cards are apparently a good choice. At the end of each quarter we hand out awards to the top people – maybe at our quarterly semi-social events. Maybe even hand out a bottle of wine at each meeting to our top person in each category. When great accomplishments take place, we email our members, blog about it, point to the scoreboard, etc.
- Bad Idea – Here is a BAD IDEA, but one that I think can lead to a good one. What if the top performer got to wear a special hat or pin, or maybe there was a silly stuffed animal sitting in front of them at the table during the meeting (A dog for the "deal hound")?