The danger of financial incentives. While there’s still some debate, there is substantial evidence suggesting that financial incentives can decrease people’s intrinsic drives for better health. Intrinsic drives, moreover, are very powerful and often the most cost-effective way to promote the right health behaviors. There’s also evidence that financial incentives can temporarily increase participation in health programs.
The proper role of financial incentives. Whenever possible, it is best to avoid financial incentives. Although financial incentives can help increase short-term participation, they can ultimately inhibit long-term success by decreasing people’s intrinsic motivations. The gain from increased short-term participation is probably not worth the long-term harm – particular if there is a better way to engage and promote the target behaviors. Plus, financial incentives are often expensive because they usually require repetition: once you use them, you must continue using them to maintain the original participation increases.
A better way to engage and promote behavior. Until recently, many employers did not have cost-effective techniques for engaging people and harnessing their intrinsic forces. This caused them to rely on expensive, recurring financial incentives. Now, with options such as our Success Formula and engagement techniques, employers can better leverage their people’s intrinsic forces. Contact us so we can show you how to cost-effectively harness and improve your people’s intrinsic forces.