When you hear the words "incentive travel program," you immediately think about a company's top performers hopping onto a plane and jetting off to a luxurious exotic location for a much-deserved vacation. White-sand beaches, global tourist attractions, expensive dinners, first-class hotels — for employees of giant long-established corporations, such perks are readily given as a reward for excellent work.

For small businesses, providing such extravagant travel opportunities would be impractical. Company resources would be put to better use acquiring equipment, training staff, securing a good office, and developing quality operations, products and services. After all, being able to stay on top of its books and perform well within its industry ought to be the top priority of small business owners.

Still, smaller organizations would do well to look into putting together incentive travel solutions that fit their current size, financial capacity, and goal of investing in their employees. Why? Here are three excellent reasons:

Incentives motivate employees.

Employees may strive to perform well at work so they can keep their job and continue receiving a paycheck that will enable them to support themselves or their families, but you — as their employer — need to cultivate a more meaningful drive within them to succeed. More than just sticking to their job, employees should be able to find motivation to excel in their role and to consistently deliver quality work — to make a contribution to the organization's development. Incentives can help them find this motivation; these let them know that genuine and quality effort is rewarded and that their roles are valued.

They foster loyalty.

When you demonstrate to your employees that you are more than happy to reward creative and consistent efforts, positive outputs and fulfilled quotas, employees are assured that you give importance to their presence and that you want them on board as the company grows. They will then develop a sense of loyalty for the company that appreciates and believes in their ability to deliver and to make a difference.

They contribute to the organization's increased earnings.

Providing incentives is beneficial to the organization, too. Since most incentive programs are tied to earnings, the employees are able to generate earnings that will help fuel the company's growth and development — and as the company grows, so will the employees' value to the organization, and better conditions and provisions can thus be available to everyone.

The key is to find an incentive travel planning specialist that can sit down and discuss your small business's unique needs and goals so that a program in the correct scale can be devised for your employees. A trip to exotic islands may not be possible at the moment, but there are excellent incentive alternatives that your employees will be happy to work toward until you can grow your capacity to provide more luxurious plans in the future.

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