Total Rewards – A Critical Strategy for Chain Restaurant/Retail Companies to be considered the "employer of choice".
By David Mansbach and Shai Kushner
Friday, 12th May 2006
It is critical for Chain Restaurant/Retail companies to execute a Total Rewards program in order to attract, retain and motivate employees.

Here are the five key components of an effective Total Rewards program.

April 14, 2006 As all indications point to continued growth and increased competition within the chain restaurant/retail industry it will be critical to create and execute on a well-rounded Total Rewards program for your employee base.

As defined by WorldatWork1, Total Rewards is the collection of all of the tools available to the employer that may be used to attract, retain and motivate employees.

Illustrated on the right are the five key components that should be included in a well-rounded Total Rewards program.


Simply put, compensation is pay an employee receives for services rendered (this includes short and long-term rewards). Compensation should support the organization's mission, goals and business objectives.


Programs an employer uses to supplement the cash compensation that employees receive (health, income protection, savings and retirement programs). A well-designed program will not be generic but customized to the diverse workforce that makes up the chain restaurant/retail industry.

For example, older employees may desire benefits such as elder care assistance for their parents and younger employees may prefer childcare programs for their children.


A specific set of organizational practices, policies and programs, plus a philosophy, that actively supports efforts to help employees achieve success at both work and home. Examples include telecommuting, job sharing, flexible work hours, sabbaticals, compressed workweek, and continued education.

Performance & Recognition

Performance is the alignment of organizational, team and individual efforts toward the achievement of business goals and organizational success, while recognition acknowledges or gives special attention to employee actions, efforts, behavior or performance. It meets an intrinsic psychological need for appreciation of one's efforts and supports business strategy by reinforcing certain behaviors that contribute to organizational success.

An effective program can be formal or informal and have a cash and/or non-cash incentive. Believe it or not, an informal survey my firm conducted indicates that a simple "thank you" or compliment for a job well done can have as great an effect as a cash bonus.

Development & Career Opportunities

As it pertains to Total Rewards development is defined as a set of learning experiences designed to enhance employees' applied skills and competencies. Development engages employees to perform better and engages leaders to advance their organizations' people strategies.

An effective development program will lead to career opportunities, a plan for employees to advance their career goals. When executed correctly the company will support career opportunities so that the best and brightest are deployed in positions that enable them to deliver their greatest value to the organization.

In order to be considered the "employer of choice" it will be critical to design a Total Rewards program that includes "all" the components mentioned above.1 WorldatWork is the world's leading not-for-profit professional association dedicated to knowledge leadership in compensation, benefits and total rewards

Mr. David Mansbach & Shai Kushner, HVS International Executive Search, New York. DMansbach@hvsinternational.com or skushner@hvsinternational.com 


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