Derek Irvine

About the Author

Derek Irvine is one of the world’s foremost experts on employee recognition and engagement, helping business leaders set a higher vision and ambition for their company culture. As the Vice President of Client Strategy and Consulting at Globoforce, Derek helps clients — including some of world’s most admired companies such as Proctor and Gamble, Intuit, KPMG, and Thomson Reuters — leverage recognition strategies and best practices to better manage company culture, elevate employee engagement, increase retention, and improve the bottom line. He's also a renowned speaker and co-author of Winning with a Culture of Recognition. Contact him at

How to Treat Employees Humanely When Times Get Tough

Best practice

Tough times often bring some interesting dilemmas for company leadership. I saw an article out recently from Strategy+Business that argued for strategic hiring during a downturn. Particularly interesting is this seeming paradox of investing in one area of the company while other areas are experiencing layoffs. The obvious question, from an employee perspective,…

How to Avoid the Perils of Rewards Programs


A recent academic study is catching a few headlines, suggesting that award programs can have negative motivational spillover effects and actually lead to decreased productivity. The study focused on an award program for attendance, implemented by a plant manager in one facility of a commercial laundry company. There are a number of reasons…