In earlier articles I shared a challenge a management team and I faced in changing the organizational systems and culture from a process of KITA Kick in the Ass motivation to one that had embedded rewards & recognition of achievement in the work itself.

Management as a Source of Reward and Punishment on the Job Create Learning teambuilding and leadership

  • Photo Credit

    In an effort to change this we identified the following:


    Rewards and punishment to people in their roles at work come from three sources.


    The Manager

    Positive Consequences
    Negative Consequences

    Having a manager that is ‘Big Enough’ to handle the complexity of the work

    Manager-employee value added coaching

    Manager-once-removed + employee mentoring & career planning

    Positive comments (verbal & written & email) “Thank you for getting this done on time. It helps me schedule the work & respond to my boss.” + “Your report was well a hit with the executive team. They are on board for the ideas you suggested.”  + “Thank you”


    Manager is ‘Too Small’ and you have to deal with bad behavior that comes from the stress.

    You are coaching the manager how to work through their own problems

    Lacking a clear line or path of options for growth and development in the company

    Negative comments (verbal & written & email) “You did that (unpleasant) project so well, you will now get all of those (unpleasant) projects”  + “Since you are done early I have more work for you.” + “I’m glad you called, the exec team and I think that last report stunk up the place.” + “Why are you asking me for help, can’t you do it yourself.” 

    We took the examples above and gathered stories from the jobs of when people received recognition & reward from their manager, plus when they felt deterred by their manager.

    From those stories we began to change how the work was done, policies & procedures, and performance support for the managers and people.

    What do you think?

    Share how your fellow workers can be rewarding or punishing? What should be added to the positive consequences? What should be added to the negative consequences?

    Hire Create-Learning