Chester Elton, co-author of The Carrot Principle, met with the Premiere staff earlier today to talk about his book and philosophy toward management.
The Carrot Principle, which Elton wrote with Adrian Gostick, is about how managers can and should create “carrot cultures” in which employees are working for the carrot instead of the stick. This is accomplished, they say, by letting people know that they are valued and appreciated for their contributions.
“It’s about finding and engaging the right people,” Elton said. “Engagement is the holy grail of employment.”
In an interactive speech that involved everything from Beatles songs to funny viral videos to Shakespeare, Elton made the case that employee appreciation is good business. Some managers have told Elton that employee appreciation is unnecessary because employees are paid for the work they do, Elton said that employee recognition positively impacts the company bottom line, and he had the numbers to support his claim. When employees feel appreciated, they work harder, more productively and with a stronger vested interest in the company’s success. “Rewarded behavior gets repeated,” he said.
Managers need to be careful with how they recognize their works, though. “General praise has no impact on people,” Elton said. “Specificity means everything.” He also said to be aware of the difference between praising efforts and rewarding results.
In both his book and speeches, Elton discusses the ways that managers can make their employees feel encouraged and appreciated. One example is finding ways to celebrate collective and individual success. “People are attracted to winners,” he said. “In business, we don’t celebrate enough.”
Elton and Gostick, are available for training seminars and keynote speeches. To find out how to bring either of them to your next event, visit www.premierespeakers.com/carrots.