Companies are constantly looking for the best way to motivate their employees to go the extra mile. Whether the employee has a commission-based income or the possibility of a bonus, one of top ways employers show their appreciation for exceptional work is through financial rewards. But how do people actually respond to this compensation-based encouragement? We surveyed 600 people throughout the US to find out.
According to the survey, companies are sticking to the more traditional methods of compensation. The most common methods of getting paid were either salary or hourly. Less than 5% of people were paid by commission, stipend, or value exchange.
As far as generational divides went, Millennials were 8% less likely than Baby Boomers to have salary-based compensation. The gender gap was evident here as well. Women were far less likely than men to be offered a salary, and 12% more likely to rely on hourly pay.
The majority of people say their paycheck gives them job satisfaction. This suggests that people feel fulfilled when they receive their paycheck, and look at it as a literal payoff of their hard work. One in four people says their paycheck motivates their productivity and makes them want to work harder. Meanwhile, 20% of people say their paycheck is what drives them to keep their job, rather than having a more profound motivating factor in their work life.
The wage gap was very evident in the responses we received. Over half of female respondents fell into the bottom 2 pay brackets, while only 42% of men fell into the bottom 2 pay brackets. Women were also 16% less likely than men to make more than $55,000 per year than men.
The majority of people are not sure if knowing how their colleagues are paid would make them want to work harder. Only 25% of people say that they are sure that knowing their coworker’s compensation would positively motivate them. Meanwhile, 16% of people say they are positive that knowing how much other people make would make them feel negative about their job.
The biggest motivating factor for people to work harder was the possibility of a raise. However, the second largest motivating factor was a love of their job. The possibility of a promotion, the work ethic of coworkers, and company culture were less common motivations for people at work.
The motivations for each gender at work were similar but not identical. Women were more motivated by love of their job and company culture than men, while men were motivated by the possibility of a promotion.
Nearly half of people say that they often work on weekends. In fact, fewer than 30% of people say that they never work on weekends.
In this case, people were much more likely to refuse to work when using their PTO. Only 21% of people say that they will work on their vacation days.
Overall, people find their paychecks to be a major factor in motivating them to work hard in their jobs…as they should! People seem to find their paycheck to be a measurement of how well they perform at work as well as their meal ticket. While companies can certainly think outside the box to motivate their employees, the traditional method of extra compensation for a job well done seems to work very well. No need to reinvent the wheel!