The Ice Bucket Challenge and Employee Engagement

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How is employee engagement like an ice bucket over the head?

The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge has become the latest viral sensation, arriving with perfect timing at the end of a long summer, when boredom is so rampant that even a brain freeze starts to seem like a good idea.

Of course, it’s all for a good cause — to raise awareness for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), the neurodegenerative disorder also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. While the original concept was to give $100 to ALS or face the frozen bucket, many people are getting soaked and donating anyway, which has resulted in hundreds of thousands of videos shared across social media sites. So far, over $79 million* has been donated to deserving nonprofits who serve those with this disease, which is particularly good news to me, as one of my brothers suffers from ALS.


So while the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge will likely fade away as quickly as it came about, it’s a great example of how the desire to do something good and be publicly recognized for it can be a powerful driver of behavior change and can produce incredible results.

http://www.biworldwide.com/en/white-papers/employee-engagement/employee-engagement-ice-bucket-challenge

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The Ice Bucket Challenge and Employee Engagement

  1. 1. Australia | Canada | China | India | LATAM | UK | US | BIWORLDWIDE.com the IceBucket Challenge and Employee EngagementHas your employee recognition program gone viral?
  2. 2. Australia | Canada | China | India | LATAM | UK | US | BIWORLDWIDE.com The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge has become the latest viral sensation.
  3. 3. Australia | Canada | China | India | LATAM | UK | US | BIWORLDWIDE.com While the original concept was to give $100 to ALS or face a frozen bucket, many people are getting soaked and donating anyway, which has resulted in hundreds of thousands of videos shared and over $79 million*donated to deserving nonprofits who serve those with this disease. *As of 8/25/14 http://www.alsa.org/fight-als/ice-bucket-challenge.html
  4. 4. But how is employee engagement like an ice bucket over the head? Australia | Canada | China | India | LATAM | UK | US | BIWORLDWIDE.com
  5. 5. Australia | Canada | China | India | LATAM | UK | US | BIWORLDWIDE.com The need to be recognized. Most people would agree that making a donation to medical research is a worthwhile thing to do, although many rarely follow through on it. When that check-writing (behavior) is shared with an entire social network (recognition), people are more likely to participate.
  6. 6. Australia | Canada | China | India | LATAM | UK | US | BIWORLDWIDE.com The need to be recognized. Most people would agree that making a donation to medical research is a worthwhile thing to do, although many rarely follow through on it. When that check-writing (behavior) is shared with an entire social network (recognition), people are more likely to participate. .The Takeaway: People will change their behavior in astonishing ways, given the right motivation and the chance to be recognized publically for it.
  7. 7. Desire to make a difference. Most people want to make the world a better place. The secret behind this viral campaign is also the key to a well-planned engagement program. When you make it appealing and simple enough, people will behave the way you want them to. Australia | Canada | China | India | LATAM | UK | US | BIWORLDWIDE.com
  8. 8. Desire to make a difference. Most people want to make the world a better place. The secret behind this viral campaign is also the key to a well-planned engagement program. When you make it appealing and simple enough, people will behave the way you want them to. The Takeaway: Tap into this desire and your employees will accomplish amazing things. Recognize them for it and these behaviors will become ingrained in your organization’s culture. Australia | Canada | China | India | LATAM | UK | US | BIWORLDWIDE.com
  9. 9. Australia | Canada | China | India | LATAM | UK | US | BIWORLDWIDE.com Connection to social. Public recognition among social networks is a big part of the ice bucket challenge’s appeal. The lure of being publically recognized can have the same power for your employees, too.
  10. 10. Australia | Canada | China | India | LATAM | UK | US | BIWORLDWIDE.com Connection to social. Public recognition among social networks is a big part of the ice bucket challenge’s appeal. The lure of being publically recognized can have the same power for your employees, too. The Takeaway: Give employees a recognition platform that integrates what people love about social media with the ability to recognize hard work or achievement of a goal in front of their peers and leaders.
  11. 11. Australia | Canada | China | India | LATAM | UK | US | BIWORLDWIDE.com Leading the way. Images of celebrities and public figures drenching themselves has been another part of the challenge’s appeal. Similarly, leaders of your organization should set the standard for recognition by being active participants.
  12. 12. Australia | Canada | China | India | LATAM | UK | US | BIWORLDWIDE.com Leading the way. Images of celebrities and public figures drenching themselves has been another part of the challenge’s appeal. Similarly, leaders of your organization should set the standard for recognition by being active participants. The Takeaway: When employees see their leaders get excited about an initiative, they are more likely to get on board… quickly!
  13. 13. 2 1 THE COLD, HARD TRUTH ABOUT THE ALS #IceBucketChallenge Tim Houlihan, Vice President, Reward Systems Group BI WORLDWIDE BIWORLDWIDE.com ©BI WORLDWIDE™ 2014 | Proprietary & Confidential The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge has become the latest viral sensation, arriving with perfect timing at the end of a long summer, when boredom is so rampant that even a brain freeze starts to seem like a good idea. Of course, it’s all for a good cause — to raise awareness for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), the neurodegenerative disorder also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. While the original concept was to give $100 to ALS or face the frozen bucket, many people are getting soaked and donating anyway, which has resulted in hundreds of thousands of videos shared across social media sites. So far, over $79 million* has been donated to deserving nonprofits who serve those with this disease, which is particularly good news to me, as one of my brothers suffers from ALS. How is employee engagement like an ice bucket over the head? When this many people engage in an uncharacteristic behavior, we get very interested. Because we’re in the business of studying the science of human behavior, all of us at BI WORLDWIDE have been following the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge phenomenon very closely. Our hallway and lunchroom conversations have tended toward wondering what, if anything, this viral craze has proven about human behavior. There are a few universal truths that seem to apply, especially as they relate to our customers and to the business of employee engagement and recognition. Here’s what we’re noticing: Need to be recognized. Writing a check for $100 for medical research is something everyone would probably say is a worthwhile thing to do, although most people don’t get around to actually following through on this good intention very often. But when that check-writing (behavior) is tied to the chance to show everyone in your social network how brave, altruistic and trendy you are (recognition), then people, in droves, will change their behavior and do something truly out of the ordinary. Takeaway: People will change their behavior in astonishing ways, given the right motivation and the chance to be recognized publically for it. Desire to make a difference. At their heart, most people would like to help make the world a better place. And at your organization, most people want to do a good job. The secret behind this viral campaign is also the secret behind a well-planned engagement program – when you make it appealing enough, and simple enough, people will behave the way you want them to. Each time one of your employees is recognized for a job well done or by demonstrating one of your corporate values, it becomes an example of exemplary behavior that is likely to be repeated. Learn how the Ice Bucket Challenge applies to your employee recognition program by downloading our article now. Australia | Canada | China | India | LATAM | UK | US | BIWORLDWIDE.com
  14. 14. BI WORLDWIDE uses the principles of behavioral economics to produce measurable results for our clients by driving and sustaining engagement with their employees, channel partners and customers. Australia | Canada | China | India | LATAM | UK | US | BIWORLDWIDE.com

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