Tie Compensation to Productivity

It occurred to me this week that many of the folks I talk with daily are out of excuses for not getting things accomplished.  Not only are they running out of new excuses, the old ones are getting, well, old.

I mean how many times can you say in a year, “I was out of the office on vacation last week, so I have all these emails to answer this week.”  Or my personal favorite, “we are so busy right now we have no time to get [insert project] completed.”

As a contractor that is only paid when I am actually producing something tangible, I got to thinking about how easy it would be for corporations to increase productivity while at the same time reduce compensation.  Simply put, compensation would be tied to actual productivity, not just being busy.

Instead of being paid all week and getting very little accomplished, corporations would only pay employees if they get things done.  Goals are accomplished on time, within budget and if not then the company does not have the expense of payroll.  Unfair you say?  Isn’t this how commission sales people are compensated?  Isn’t this why corporations like to hire contractors and consultants because they only pay for work being performed?

It might sound like a far fetched idea to tie compensation to productivity, but it is really only far fetched if you aren’t very productive yourself.  If you are the kind of person that prides themselves on getting things done, this new “pay for performance” plan should be quite appealing.  Think how much faster things would get done if people didn’t get paid until the work was completed?

All managers would need to do each week is to set agreed production tasks into place for the following week, and if they are completed then they get paid, and if not then maybe only half-pay.

While this idea is something no one is ever going to implement, from a motivational tool, what do you think would happen to productivity if employees thought it could be an option?


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