15 Sep, 2021

Fact: Giving employees a choice of rewards boosts creativity

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Written by
Micha Berkuz
It’s official: When you allow your people to choose their own reward from a range of options, their creativity spikes!

"People work for money but go the extra mile for recognition, praise and rewards." ― Dale Carnegie

That’s according to a new study conducted by management experts at Rice University, Tulane University, the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and National Taiwan Normal University. It is the first study to closely examine the effects of reward choice in a field experiment, which was conducted in the context of an organization-wide suggestion program.

“Organizations spend a lot of resources and exert a great deal of effort in designing incentive schemes that reward the employees who exhibit creativity at work,” said co-author Jing Zhou, the Mary Gibbs Jones Professor of Management and Psychology at Rice’s Jones Graduate School of Business.

“Our results showed that the effort may be a bit misplaced. Instead of discovering one reward type that is particularly effective at promoting creativity, what is more effective is to provide the employees with the opportunity to choose from several reward types, if they submit one or more ideas that are among the top 20% most creative ones.”

The researchers also found that the choice of rewards fostered creativity by raising the employees’ belief in their ability to be creative. Alternative rewards also had a powerful impact on boosting the creativity of employees who earlier had scored high on an assessment of creative personality characteristics.

So Gifted.co is very much ahead of the curve! Check out some of the many options this leading appreciation platform provides for rewarding your most deserving employees:


Gift cards starting from $25 for a range of products from Crutchfield, premier supplier of car audio products and much more. 

Babies & Kids

Plenty to choose from with a gift card for purchases from Buy Buy Baby and Old Navy.


Pamper them with a gift card from Sephora, Ulta Beauty or Bath & Body Works. 


Fabulous options from Stub Hub, AMC Theatres, Cinemark, Alamo Drafthouse, Regal Entertainment, GameStop, Xbox and Barnes & Noble.


Lots of choices from top brands like Nordstrom, Banana Republic, Old Navy, Gap, American Eagle Outfitters, Lord & Taylor and more! Provide gift cards so the recipient gets to choose exactly what they want.  

Food & Dining

A feast of choices with a gift card for top eateries including Morton’s Steakhouse, Brinker, Bloomin Brands, T.G.I. Fridays, Cheesecake Factory, Red Lobster, Applebees, Burger King, Darden Restaurants, Krispy Kreme and many more.

Pet & Home

Gift cards from top brands including West Elm, QVC, Pottery Barn, TJX (includes T.J. Maxx, Marshalls, Home Goods & Sierra Trading Post), Bed Bath & Beyond, Best Buy, Petco, Wayfair.com and Lowe’s.    


Super relaxing rewards in the form of gift cards for pampering from such top names as Spafinder and Spa Week.

Sports & Outdoors

Gift cards to the value of your choosing from the likes of Nike, Rei, Callaway, Columbia Sportswear, Athleta, Champs Sports, L.L. Bean and Bass Pro Shops.


Delight your highest performing team members with a well-deserved break! Options include Celebrity Cruises and Hotels.com.  

“To win in the marketplace you must first win in the workplace.” ― Doug Conant

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