The holiday season is in full swing, and with it comes an air of accomplishment and sighs of relief. After 12 months of hard work, people can look back at the rewards they were able to hopefully reap. For an offshore team, reward means achieving the goals set out for them and rising above the challenges to see them come to fruition. Companies that recognize the hard work and effort of their team often see to it that it is recognized.
Companies that either have a virtual office or an offshore team may find it difficult to know the best way to show their appreciation. However, it’s important to remember the basics of rewards.
Rewarding your Offshore Team Through Tangible and Intangible
Rewards in this context do not just mean something tangible like a holiday bonus or a service award. There is also the feeling of being rewarded emotionally for accomplishing the opportunities that was laid out for you. That intangible sentiment of knowing you were able to skill up internally and feel like a more complete person because of it.
Whether at work or in their personal lives, it is in human nature to seek reward or recognition. They want to feel some sort of acknowledgment for the work they put in on the road they had to go on. Different things motivate different people. Knowing what drives your offshore team determines their reward. With that said, motivation often stems from either the intrinsic or extrinsic.
Intrinsic Motivation and Reward
If a person is intrinsically motivated, task enjoyment is in the act itself or the accomplishment. It is where the passion and initiative to do a project outside of any external or tangible reward lies. Compared to extrinsic rewards, intrinsically motivating staff is challenging, especially in remote work setups. Not only does everyone have a different goal that fuels them, but this form of motivation has to be organically cultivated. Which means that it is not measured through “giving more.” The fulfilment of any internal reward has to come from the staff themselves, but that doesn’t mean you can’t provide avenues to foster it.
An intrinsic reward is the challenge and participation of the activity, the joy of seeing it to completion. The work is then fun and will develop personal skills. Most employers would see that praise is the best way to increase intrinsic motivation, but that would still count as an external reward. In reality, intrinsic rewards are best when the individual sees themselves in the work that they make or sees their participation in a collaborated effort.
Reward Your Offshore Team with Recognition or Learning
The task of intrinsically rewarding your offshore team may seem like a challenge. Yet, the magic of the digital age sees to it that we have multiple options to connect with those that are physically far. There are several things you can do to intrinsically motivate your team:
Offer to sign them on to professional development programs. Offshore providers often have available workshops or training courses to offer any client. Through this, your staff can evolve their current skills and challenge themselves to apply them professionally.
Mention them in thank you letters. There’s nothing more demotivating than working without acknowledgement. By taking time to personally mention individual staff through thank you emails or even in virtual meetings, employees will see that their efforts are not wasted and that any effort is being noticed. You can go one step further and have someone in your team handwrite your personal messages and hand them out physically in your offshore team’s base!
Ask and listen to input. Again, intrinsic motivation comes from recognizing ourselves in the work that we do. The next time you and your offshore team meet, ask for their input and opinions! It will motivate them to not only try and stand out but also have their voice heard. And if the ideas are great, seeing their work reflected in your products or management does wonders to reward our intrinsic selves.
Extrinsic Motivation and Reward
Extrinsic motivation is a bit more straightforward. It means that you get separate outcomes or compensation for any task you do. In contrast to intrinsic forms of motivation, this does not need the individual to enjoy the activity that they will be doing. Instead, the task is done for the reward or to avoid punishment. Nonetheless, being extrinsically motivated means that, while the task itself is not enjoyable, you are doing it to finish the job. Some may see it as shallow, but having extrinsic motivation is not a bad thing. After all, we are all people with obligations; after all, it is at the base of our hierarchy of needs.
Extrinsic rewards stem from purely outside needs. Companies reward this through well-known tangible things like holiday bonuses, gift cards, or plaques. They also come in intangible avenues like promotions or recognitions.
Give Your Team a Dinner or a Long Break
Extrinsic rewards can come in different shapes or forms; the challenge is to know how to do it right. It’s not wise to give gifts to your team willy-nilly, and it’s better to provide a personal touch.
Ask fellow teammates. If you’re stumped with figuring out how to reward an individual offshore employee, it’s best to ask one of their teammates for that personal touch. Whether it be merch from their favourite artist or cookies from their go-to bakeshop, this is a great way to reward that hard worker in your offshore team.
Sponsor a team dinner. During busy production seasons, it’s best to showcase your appreciation for your offshore team through a dinner reward! It’s not only a chance for them to bond over great food, but a chance to unwind after work. Coordinate with your offshore provider to know the best places around them to give your team a nice treat.
Give them a long break. This is best rewarded after peak seasons when their workload is not as heavy. You can give your team an early out on their workdays or with extra paid time-off!
Both are Necessary Rewards
While both intrinsic and extrinsic rewards are polar opposites, they are not exclusive to one another. Your offshore staff can foster a passionate mindset towards their work and have praise or bonuses. What a great team leader can do is learn what works best for them and what they would need to do so. When working with an offshore team, it’s best to contact your offshore provider to know how they can help or what options are available. Your team works hard and with passion, so showcase your appreciation for them; what better time than the holidays?