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Many people wish to recognize the consistent every day "expected" or "meets requirements" with more than the average reward. To me, this is part of the worn out "trophy" recognition. Sure, thanks for a job well done and an "unexpected" reward now and then either intrinsic or extrinsic are absolutely necessary to keep employees from feeling unappreciated. However, I agree with stepping up the reward for any type of behavior you wish to encourage. Defining what is "unexpected" would be key for employees to understand in order to drive the behavior. That should come by defining what is expected behavior first. And recognizing that the compensation one receives is for the expected behavior. In order to earn a greater reward, the employee then should know, they would not receive a greater reward, unless they perform outside those clear expectations. Yet, how often do we find expectations clearly defined?

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