Friday, September 26, 2008


The last "atta boy" I received was a bottle of spring water. Before that, my incentive was a t-shirt with some slogan that guaranteed that I would never wear that t-shirt. I have received lapel pins, certificates, desk calendars, figurines, ink pens, posters, towels and the list is endless. Multiply that with all the other people receiving similar junk. How much of the economy is wasting money on programs that are senseless and serve no positive purpose? The only entity that benefits is the company that makes all the giveaways that end up in landfills. I wish I had all the money that had been spent on all that junk that I received that I neither needed nor wanted. I would never have chosen to buy a poster that said "Life is a daring adventure". If I want motivation, I will look for whatever speaks to me, not what someone else thinks will motivate me. Where should I store all that "free" stuff or how do I discard an endless stream of trinkets? These "free" items really aren't.

If I pay membership dues to places like a fitness center or a club, I don't need trivial rewards for that. I would, however, like to have my membership fee lowered so I don't have to pay for all that garbage that is handed out as a reward for joining. Whoever is deciding to purchase and give away all the trinkets has to make a "One size fits all" decision that ends up fitting no one and it only impresses me that it is a very wasteful project. Maybe that person gets to put on their resume that they pioneered an incentive program, I would look at it totally differently. I would say they have no judgment and waste members' money on junk. The best incentive is to lower membership dues.

For years, I have received trivial junk on the job. Again, raise my salary, and I will decide how I want to spend that money, but don't give me junk that has been bought with money that could have gone into my paycheck. Every time one of those giveaway programs comes through, the workers say the same thing, "We got junk, the person with that lack of judgment got promoted." Cold, hard cash speaks louder than t-shirts, lapel pins, calendars, ink pens, or caps.

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