How well are your incentives aligned with your strategy?

EKG Pulse Graph with Glowing Blue Line

Our reader poll today asks: How well are your people’s incentives aligned with your organization’s strategy?

  • Very well: there’s a clear link between strategy and incentives: 14.0%
  • Well: incentives are generally linked to strategy: 30.5%
  • Not well: it’s unclear how strategy is tied to incentives: 37.8%
  • Not at all: our incentives have nothing to do with our strategy: 17.7%

Incentives drive behavior. Behavior drives strategy. An alarming percentage of you report there’s no link between your strategy and your incentives. That’s a problem. People do what they get paid to do. If you want your strategy executed, you need to align incentives with achieving those strategic goals. The stronger the link between strategy and incentives, the more likely you are to drive behaviors consistent with your strategic direction. When you notice misalignment between incentives and strategy, drive clarity quickly. Involve your compensation and HR teams in the conversation when you set strategy. If you don’t, don’t be surprised when people are working on things that have nothing to do with your strategy.

Do you agree with these poll results? Let us know in the comments below!

Mike Figliuolo at thoughtLEADERS, LLC

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These results were originally a SmartPulse poll in SmartBrief on Leadership which tracks feedback from more than 210,000 business leaders. Get smarter on leadership and sign up for the SmartBrief on Leadership e-newsletter.

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