Incentive travel rewards are the best ways to show your leadership team that you appreciate their hard work and dedication to your company's success.

However, many sales teams struggle with how to sell incentive travel programs to their leadership, especially when competing with other companies offering highly competitive perks like merchandise or cash bonuses.

Here are a few tips to help you successfully sell incentive travel to your leadership.

Making your sales reps travel across a country or a continent can be daunting, but it's also an effective way to drive business growth.

If you are considering incentive travel to push your salespeople over that revenue-growth hurdle, there are some things you should know first. What is incentive travel? Who travels on incentive trips? How do I make sure my sales team enjoys their rewards trip instead of dreading it? And how do I keep costs under control? We have answers to all these questions and more.

Let us dive in!

Why do we have incentive travel?

One of our clients once asked us why do we have incentive travel? That's a great question.

We might have a few ideas. The first is that people love rewards and recognition.

Even if you never get on a plane, just thinking about some fun activity—and all those business-related incentives—can be motivating.

When it comes time to sit down and work, your brain is excited by everything that awaits you at your destination.

And as anyone who has done an incentive trip knows, there are plenty of ways to make sure that everyone stays focused while away from home.

But even if there were no such thing as an incentive trip, it would still be essential to recognize top performers with something tangible.

A simple thank-you note can go a long way; so, can lunch with your boss or dinner out with colleagues.

What are our organization's priorities?

It's important to remember that incentive travel is a tool, like all rewards and recognition. If you don't have clear sales goals at your organization, it will be hard to argue why you should invest in an incentive trip or program.

 So, before you start selling your ideas internally, make sure your top leadership understands what they want out of an incentive trip—is it better performance? Better business relationships? A more significant share of the wallet?

Have their support behind using incentive travel as a key part of getting there. Then show them how incentives align with those priorities and ask them if they think that might be something they want in their plan. Chances are, they will.

How can incentive travel align with our goals?

To determine whether incentive travel is a good fit, ask yourself how it aligns with your goals. If you're trying to bring a team together and encourage collaboration, incentive travel can be a great way to do that. Are you trying to help leadership become more aware of what's happening on their teams? That's a good reason for incentive travel, too. Does your organization have specific goals tied in with revenue or financial targets? You might find that making corporate-level leaders experience first-hand why hitting those goals is essential could be an effective strategy. The key is to make sure incentive travel complements your overall goals—if not, it may not be worth doing.

How will incentive travel benefit my business area?

Whether you're trying to grow sales or improve customer retention, incentive travel can drive positive change.

This is especially true if your business area has never used incentives before. Remember that it's in your company's best interest to sell your leadership on incentive travel.

It would help if you had their support—and, ultimately, their money—to pull off a successful event. Before approaching them with an incentive trip idea, explain how incentives benefit your business area and why it's worth investing in it now.

For example, say you have an underperforming sales team that makes up 20 percent of total revenue—incentives could be an excellent way to boost those numbers without spending much money.

Use these ideas as inspiration to help your leadership understand incentive travel benefits:

Understanding and Assessing Risk Section

The first thing you have to understand about incentive travel is that it's a significant expense, but it can reap huge rewards if executed correctly.

Assess your company's risk tolerance before making any decisions. Some companies don't allow incentive travel; others take advantage of it, implementing tighter controls on spending and documentation.

If your company doesn't enable incentive travel, keep an eye out: Policies change over time, and they may loosen up to keep employees engaged and committed.

If there's resistance from management, suggest an experimental project with a small number of employees first.

This will allow everyone involved to see how incentive travel impacts performance without risking too much money or too many resources.

It also gives you time to get feedback from participants to make changes ahead of larger projects. And remember: Everyone has their own opinion on incentive travel—but only yours matters when trying to sell them!

Be prepared with data and statistics showing why incentive travel helps productivity, retention rates, and other essential business metrics. Even better?

Show them how their employees feel about incentive trips—many managers are surprised by how much positive feedback they receive after sending their teams away for work!

The idea of individual travel incentives might sound overly complicated or, worse, impossible to implement in your company.

But in truth, it's pretty simple. It can be highly effective at creating engaged employees, which leads to positive outcomes for everyone involved: increased employee loyalty, decreased turnover rates, higher job satisfaction, lower stress levels, and more productive employees.

In this article, we'll go over how to use individual travel incentives to create engaged employees—which will make everyone happier in the long run!

Employee recognition: An overview 

For decades, US companies have given out gift cards and other rewards for employee recognition. However, recent data indicate that these incentives are losing their appeal among millennials.

According to a 2015 Towers Watson study, just 37% of millennials preferred cash or gift cards as a reward compared with 62% of employees overall.

Companies must adapt their programs to stay competitive in today's marketplace—especially among millennial workers who will soon make up 75% of most workplaces.

Individual travel incentives are one example of how firms can stay ahead by providing more meaningful awards to recognize employees' contributions and efforts.

A great place to start is to reward employee performance and offer greater flexibility when choosing rewards. More than ever before, rewards need to be personalized and customized.

Millennials are increasingly demanding greater levels of personalization from brands they interact with daily—from retail shopping experiences to mobile app design and marketing campaigns.

They want brands to understand them on an individual level to get what they always wanted.

One-way organizations do that through personalized rewards and recognition programs (which also help build stronger teams).

By giving employees access to online portals where they can see real-time information about themselves, including detailed reports on progress toward their goals, employers demonstrate that they value each person's individuality and care about meeting their needs and increasing employee engagement across the board.

Examples of rewards and recognition programs

Consider rewarding employees for even the smallest successes to get started with a rewards and recognition program.

For example, if an employee makes an extra effort on a project that increases revenue or decreases costs, reward them with a $10–$20 gift card.

These types of small rewards are what experts call micro rewards—small incentives that can go a long way toward creating engaged employees.

Acknowledge milestones: Reward employees for reaching major milestones in their careers—or at least provide some feedback about their progress on your yearly performance reviews.

This will help them feel recognized and give you insight into how they are doing.

It's also a good idea to reward employees who contribute to your company culture. This might be as simple as sending out thank-you cards or having lunch with each other once a month.

Recognize hard work: Even if you don't have enough budget for rewards, it's still important to recognize hard work when you see it. If someone goes beyond a project, let them know how much you appreciate it!

You could do so by having lunch together or taking some time out of your day to write up an email thanking them for their efforts.

Individual travel incentives - a powerful tool for employee engagement

Rewards and recognition programs are an effective way for employers to reinforce desirable behavior and offer incentives for employees who do a good job.

Reward employee achievements with individual travel incentives.

This can be free flights or upgrades, waived baggage fees, airport lounge passes, food vouchers, and similar perks.

Consider creative rewards: Some companies award non-traditional rewards - like discounts on rental cars or accommodation at holiday properties that their employees will value and appreciate – as much as more traditional gift certificates for fine dining or luxury shopping sprees.

Remember that it's often about what you want them to take away from your business trip that counts - The key is making sure there's a clear link between what they achieve on business trips and benefits they receive through company travel schemes.

Don't forget to thank them when they return - Make sure employees get a pat on the back when returning from an important trip.

A quick email thanking them for all their hard work goes a long way to reinforce how valuable they are to your organization.

It also helps keep everyone focused on delivering great results every time they go out of town.

The benefits of individual travel incentive programs

These programs are great for creating an engaged and motivated workforce.

You can motivate employees through travel incentives: giving travel rewards or using trips as employee recognition tools.

Most companies use individual travel incentive programs for both purposes, but a few companies that want to emphasize rewards choose one approach over another.

When deciding which type of program is best for your company, consider Reward-based programs:

Reward-based programs offer rewards such as gift cards, cash bonuses, or extra time off to employees who reach specific goals related to sales volume, customer service scores, or other metrics.

 A reward-based program may be beneficial if you have high turnover rates among entry-level workers—younger workers may appreciate rewards more than older workers do—or if you have lots of seasonal staff members who work only during peak seasons (for example, summer). An added benefit of reward-based travel incentive programs is that they help build loyalty among current employees—which means they're less likely to leave when someone else offers them a job.

Recognition-based programs: Recognition-based programs recognize employees reaching certain milestones with rewards such as gift cards, cash bonuses, or extra time off. For example, a company might reward employees who reach five years of employment with a trip to Hawaii.

If you decide on a recognition-based program, it aligns with your business goals and values. If possible, tie rewards to specific accomplishments so that every employee understands what it takes to earn them.

Improving the efficiency of your reward program

Many companies may see reward programs as a cost that they don't want to spend money on, especially in a down economy.

But your employees are key players in your company's success, and when you use them effectively, it will be reflected in the company's overall bottom line.

Using reward programs is an affordable way for employers to encourage employee engagement and personal development and improve performance.

A personal touch can go a long way toward achieving these goals. Asking employees for their opinions about how a program could be better tailored towards their needs is much more effective than simply implementing your thoughts on what would work best.

With input from your staff, you can create a program that encourages productivity and fosters camaraderie among coworkers.

This will help motivate everyone to do their best because they know that others have their back. And who doesn't like rewards?

Giving out small tokens of appreciation is another great way to show employees how important they are to your business. After all, happy employees' equal happy customers! 

Nothing feels better than celebrating your hard-earned break being whisked away to a relaxing, calming tropical island through Incentive Travel.

Benefit of Sales Incentive Trips

A sales incentive trip consists of the three 'R's – Relaxation, Recognition, and Reward. One must know that sales roles are incredibly strenuous and stressful, no matter the organization.

Sales employees have to prospect, build relationships, manage opportunities, and perform many other tasks to achieve both short-term and long-term revenue aims. The turnover rates for sale employees are enormous and replacing sales representatives cost companies tons of money each year.

To construct and manage successful sales logistics, companies need to perfect their infrastructure, hiring process, and compensation philosophy. There is a magnitude of reasons why a company can use sales incentive travels.

These reasons could be to stimulate sales of their products and services and recognize the top-performing sales representatives and motivate them and others further.

Many organizations have difficulty developing, promoting, and administering these programs to achieve desired results.

So, the primary question is: how do they work? And how can one set up an effective sales incentive travel program?

How Do They Work?

Well, This framework consists of five essential elements:

1. Alignment: Alignment refers to an opportunity to promote conjunction between the quota-bearing and non-quota-bearing employees in the functional groups that make up the revenue, perhaps by creating multiple versions of the incentive trips.

2. Transparency: Transparency can do this by creating a calendar with information about the trip, strict deadlines, next year's aims, evaluating and reviewing the previous year's incentive trip, and setting qualifications for the employees to go on next year's trip.

3. Accountability: Accountability can create a clear and concise ownership hierarchy and formal charter. The order can consist of executive leadership, sales, and non-sales stakeholders such as HR and the legal team.

4. Fairness: Fairness refers to setting up attainable sales targets. These targets should be achievable and quantifiable.

5. Connectivity: Connectivity refers to the marketing of the trip – presenting data on a monthly and a quarterly leaderboard and spreading posters around the office. Being part of an establishment that uses sales incentive trips can build teamwork and connections.
Sales incentive trips build such a relationship of friendship in which each employee participates in the celebration of every other employee's successes.

This teamwork leads to more efficient business dealings, which benefit the clients and ultimately benefit the owners, investors, and employees.

These sales incentive trips work. And for a myriad of reasons.

Successful salespeople are achievers and are motivated by winning. These non-monetary trips make you feel like a part of a particular elite group.

Achievers get the opportunity to connect. Being in the same space for some time builds camaraderie amongst the team.

We demonstrate a hallmark of our company. These trips show employees' commitment to the work-life balance and that the company cares about the employee – as an individual.

Create a personal connection with the top-sales performers. There is an intimate connection between the team members leading them to work better.

If we look at the psychological reasons why these sales incentive trips work, it is safe to say that they cover all four motivational factors.

In today's date, many organizations employ incentive travel programs because these programs motivate the employees and increase their productivity. In fact, according to research by the Incentive Travel Council and Site International Foundation, 96% of employees express travel incentives motivate them. Travel incentives motivate your employees to help achieve business objectives by increasing productivity, enhancing performance, increasing sales, and achieving targets. Moreover, these corporate incentives provide numerous other benefits as well. Generally, companies use travel incentives to motivate their sales force to achieve sales targets.

Let's look into this blog; we will discuss the significance of travel incentive and how it provides ROI for your organization.

Employees Feel Appreciated

Travel incentive is used to support and appreciate the employees. According to the studies, it is one of the significant incentives to motivate staff and increase their productivity to achieve objectives. Giving employees incentive trip work as a motivation for them. It gives the satisfaction to staff that their efforts are appreciated by their organization. Research conducted on 200,000 people, including employees and managers, showed that regarding the question "My company values high performance," the companies that achieve the lowest 25% return on investment of 2.4. However, those in the top 25% had an average return on investment three times high. It shows that the organizations that invest in incentive travel reach higher productivity.

Prevent Employee Turnover

In the United States, businesses suffer the loss of an estimated $11 billion yearly due to staff turnover, according to the stats. 79% of employees who resigned from their jobs mention that "lack of appreciation" is a primary reason for quitting. According to research, travel incentive programs can help to prevent employee turnover. Society for Human Resources Management has revealed in their report that the organizations with recognition programs such as travel incentives have played effectively in retention, engagement, and performance (SHRM/Globoforce, 2012). Furthermore, if employees feel that their company is giving them value and rewards, that will lead to workplace satisfaction. So, it will be a wise decision to invest in travel incentives to appreciate your staff and retain professional employees.

Enhance Organization Loyalty

When staff sees that their organization respects and recognizes their efforts, they feel more motivated and become more loyal to the company. Moreover, 72% of staff awarded with travel incentives state they feel more loyal to their organization. In their study, Site International Foundation and the Incentive Travel Council revealed that loyal staff are like ambassadors for your company and will work efficiently to make sure that the organization achieves its objectives.

Ideal for Relieving Stress

Travel incentive plays a vital role in relieving the stress of employees. Employees that receive travel incentives feel reduced stress, increased productivity, and more confidence. It will benefit the employees and your organization because your staff will return to work feeling motivated. Moreover, employees will work more efficiently and fulfill their tasks with higher productivity.

Develop Team Building among Employees

When employees go for an incentive trip in a group, it gives an excellent opportunity for teamwork and friendship. During their trip, employees will spend some quality time and memorable experiences together, providing them the opportunity to know each other. After the trip, the employees will have a stronger bond when they start their job responsibilities. Moreover, it will improve the workplace environment, and employees prefer to work as a team. Furthermore, a positive work environment also helps in retaining employees.

In a survey, on a scale of 1 to 10, managers rate the significance of a positive work environment at 8.5. Since the covid-19 pandemic, organizations are now allowing employees to work remotely. Travel incentive gives a chance for employees to meet up with their office colleagues that will help in team-building and bonding.

Establishes Productivity Standards

We have discussed how beneficial it is to provide travel incentives. It can help boost your employees' confidence, increase productivity, and help achieve business objectives. Furthermore, it can also help your organization set productivity standards and adjust strategy according to your business goal. For example, if John achieves the sales target by selling 20 items in a month and Watson only sold 12, John will be eligible for the travel incentive reward. However, now management knows that selling 20 items is an achievable sales target for a month, so it is better to identify John's best strategies and help Watson overcome his weaknesses.

The Travel Incentive Program is a Worthy Investment

Businesses have to compete with other market players in this challenging work environment. Therefore, it is essential to retain talented employees and increase sales and revenue. Therefore, travel incentive is highly beneficial for companies and worth to invest. Furthermore, travel incentives help you achieve your business objectives and give you a higher return on investment. Moreover, it will motivate employees to boost their confidence and retain skilled staff.

Organizations should make every attempt to retain capable employees and hire those who are proficient in their field as well. Promote a workplace culture that cares for the well-being of staff, and you will see your business flourishing. Moreover, it helps in competing with business rivals with more effective results. Furthermore, nobody wants to leave an organization that appreciates the efforts of its employees. Likewise, everyone wants to join a company that provides incentives to their employees and recognizes their efforts.

Travel Incentive Plans

We are offering travel incentive planning services. From the initial stages to the plan's implementation, we will guide you in every step to implement your desired travel incentive plan. Our travel incentive plans will motivate, engage, and uplift your employees' confidence and boost return on investment for your organization.

Our incentive trips will thrill, engage and inspire your employees and boost long-term ROI for your company. So get our help and opt for the customized incentive plan according to your employees.

We aim to provide the best travel incentive plans designed for the organizations. Contact us today or visit our website incentivetravelgroup.com to learn more about travel incentive programs.

In a world that is growing increasingly unstable due to terrorism and civil unrest, many people don’t feel as confident about traveling as they once did.

But there are some key actions employers can take to help their road warriors feel more at ease while they’re out there.

Let’s look at 5 ways to keep employees safe while traveling.

1. Information

Everyone’s afraid of things they don’t understand or know about.  That’s why providing your traveling employees with information about the destination and conditions is the best travel policy practice.

A fact sheet, providing key information like what to expect from the climate, the city, and even the neighborhood your traveling employee is headed for, reduces the mystery and ups the interest.  Include a list of local services, restaurants, and public transit.

2. Speak to Specifics

Tailor the information you provide to your individual travelers.  Some may have medical conditions or require medication.  Ensure that you include information about medical services and pharmacies for these travelers.

Being aware of factors like this will help you meet your duty of care for the specific employee traveling.

3. Travel Insurance

If your business doesn’t have travel insurance coverage, it’s time to get that sorted.

If you already have this in place, then it’s incumbent on you to communicate information about this insurance to travelers before they embark on their trip.

4. Health Requirements

Are there health requirements your traveler needs to know about before taking off?  Do they need inoculations?  Should they not be drinking tap water?  Is it OK to eat street food? 

You’re the employer, so it’s your job to make your traveling employees aware of these factors before they go.

5. Emergency Planning

Nobody really wants to think about it, but responsible employers do.

If your employees are traveling to a destination in the throes of change, including intermittent civil unrest, then having an emergency plan in place which includes communication and evacuation is a best practice.

Being equipped with secure, reliable communication in this instance is key to an emergency plan being effective, so ensure that’s the case.

PRO-TIP:  When your road warriors are entering “hot zones” or visiting destinations with a reputation for unrest, then enrolling with the US Embassy should be a matter of protocol.  This ensures that the person is accounted for should instability arise.

Incentive Travel Group

Are you concerned about existing protocols at your company for keeping your employees safe while traveling?  Let ITG take the reins and develop your corporate travel policy to encompass traveler safety.

With over 20 years in the business, we bring you wide-ranging experience in incentive travel programming, rewards, meeting and conference planning and so much more.  We’re the experts who raise the bar, making your travel program the one to replicate.

Ready for an outsourced solution to all your corporate travel needs?  Then, you’re ready for the pros at ITG.  Contact us to discuss these 5 ways to keep employees safe while traveling.  Discover excellence with the team at ITG.

Employee motivation should be your most important goal to sucess. You’ve got a full roster of employees.  But do you know who’s doing the heavy lifting?

Not all of them!  That’s a sure thing.

It’s tough to keep your staff engaged every minute or every day.  Tough.  Not impossible.  What you need to do to keep all of them as connected as possible to the goal they’re collectively reaching for, is to enhance their motivational instinct.

And that instinct is, primarily, self-interest.

Employee motivation – a veritable gold mine of increased profits – is elusive at times.  But with the right strategy, you can get your employees engaged and keep them that way.

When the Usual Motivators Fail

Employers can no longer count on fallbacks like pay increases, bonuses and benefits enhancement.  Employees don’t get a thrill from those.  If you’re a quality employer, your employees are already deriving the monetary benefit of that quality.

It’s no good to tell them they’ll keep their jobs if they perform to expectations.  When you’re trying to grow, “doing the minimum” isn’t going to cut it.  And this employment market belongs to employees.  Their mobility has never been better, especially if they’re highly skilled. 

It’s not like they don’t know their value.  They’ll head for greener pastures if they’re not getting what they need from your company.

Motivation is speaking to employee self-interest in a more compelling way.  That “more compelling way” means putting something on the table to sets off employee pleasure centers.

Travel, for example.  Tying your company goals to the dreams and desires of your employees is a proven way to extract from them the kind of top performance and productivity you’re looking for. 

The idea of coming out on top and winning an incentive gets the juices flowing, the healthy competition going and motivation sparking.

Cultural Motivation

Employee motivation, when expressly included in company culture as one of its pillars, is an effective model for growing your company by engaging and thus, retaining your star people.

That’s how incentive programs work.  When woven into a strong company culture, they send a message of rewards for the kind of work that reaches a little further than what’s expected.  When that culture embraces all effort that contributes to growth and success, it becomes a buoyant reality that raises the level of employee engagement and stems turnover.

A quality incentive program which taps into the dreams and desires of employees is where your gold mine of increased profits begins.  With exceptional ROIs which leave monetary incentives and rewards in the dust, travel incentives serve to hit employees where they live – offering them something extraordinary in return for their best effort.

Get the Edge

With more than 2 decades creating quality incentives and incentive programming for companies like yours, Incentive Travel Group is your outsourced solution to unlocking employee motivation.

We help take your operation to the next level without burying your existing human resources.  Instead, we’re an extension of what you’ve got on board, bringing you a professional incentive solution.

Ready to go for gold?  Contact us.

With US unemployment low and top-performing employees highly mobile due to this factor, employers need all the help they can get when strategizing around retention. All the tools in your toolbox are needed in a climate like this, so this post is about the many ways travel incentives make employees produce better results. 

Employees who produce better results are icons, representing the success of your corporate culture.  They’re also the people most likely to stick around when they’re treated well.

Let’s look at how travel incentives can improve motivation, inspiration, and results.

Genuine Employee Motivation

Everyone loves a trip to a place they’ve never been.  And when that trip is a travel incentive offered to your employees for a job well done, or for having returned the top sales figures, it’s highly desired.

A trip as a reward creates a vacation that the employer pays for, recognizing the successful employee’s efforts toward obtaining it.  Who doesn’t want that?

Having a travel incentive program in place, allows HR professionals to point to the program as a benefit, attracting great talent.  And word gets out about companies with cultures that encourage high-performing employees this way.

Those are companies that highly skilled, rock star employees want to work for.

Loyalty That Lasts

Once you’ve got them through the front door, there’s nothing like travel incentives to inspire loyalty.  That’s especially true when you’ve tailored your program to the desires of employees.

Feeling respected and valued, employees who benefit from travel incentives are more likely to stay.  They’ll be nourished by an enhanced feeling of connection to the organization they work for when they sense that you notice what they bring to the party.

And there’s no question that employee loyalty puts a dent in turnover and the high costs associated with it, both fiscally and in terms of morale.

Health and Wellness

There’s no question that a healthy workforce out-performs an unhealthy one.  Burnout and stress can both be mitigated with a well-deployed and carefully crafted travel incentives program.

Stress has physical consequences for human beings.  When you’re able to provide your employees with a “thank you” in the form of an all-expenses-paid trip, you’re giving them the gift of time away from what’s stressing them and burning them out.

Your business reduces absenteeism and healthcare costs associated with sickness caused by stress (illnesses like heart disease, for starters).

Boosted Productivity

Rear ends in seats don’t mean much if those rear ends aren’t producing.

Travel incentives inspire employees to reach a little higher.  The time they spend out of the office serves to reinvigorate their efforts, helping them to refocus and return better results, via boosted productivity.

These are just some of the ways travel incentives make employees produce better results.  Those results are the ROI you want for your travel incentive dollar.  Increased productivity, reduced turnover, and enhanced motivation and loyalty are all factors that mean a healthy, robust workplace that gets your business where you need it to be.

Contact Incentive Travel Group for more information.

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