Leadership inSITEs Preview: What's Top of Mind for Those at the Top

smu insights

Debuting this September will be Leadership inSITEs, the latest in SITE Foundation’s ongoing pipeline of research that advances the business case for incentive travel.

Conducted in partnership with MBA candidates from Southern Methodist University (SMU) Cox School of Business, Leadership inSITEs captures qualitative data about incentive travel use from executive professionals at the top of their industries. The SMU MBA team and SITE Foundation Research Committee then analyzed this feedback for larger trends, patterns, and insights into current best motivational practices and to determine what else is emerging during this period of growth and recovery.

Initial Conclusions

Overall, we found there is still an incredibly strong case to be made for deploying incentive travel as a motivational tool — and that c-suite leaders themselves are making an affirmative case for the use of incentive travel to motivate employees within their own organizations. 

The leaders we spoke with clearly articulated how incentive travel is a differentiator for the companies that use it, whether aiming to drive sales, retain employees, foster a strong company culture, or a mix of rationales.

Moreover, leaders were able to share both tangible and intangible benefits their companies have experienced through many collective years of using it as part of their organizations’ reward structures.

Another interesting thread that emerged from these leader conversations were trends that are clearly top of mind for the decision-makers interviewed. Emerging practices that leaders showed curiosities around included:

  • How to extend the use of incentive travel beyond sales teams
  • Building out incentive travel budgets to allow for greater personalization and customization during a program
  • Determining the best ways of incorporating virtual elements and details, especially to entice potential future qualifiers
  • Innovative ways of incorporating meaningful CSR activities

What’s next

We have big plans to share this research within our industry and far beyond in the weeks ahead. In addition to showcasing much of the Leadership inSITEs data we collected here on Motivate and at our upcoming SITE Classic event, we also want to be sure this work reaches the broader business community — and have exciting plans to reach toward this goal.

Stay tuned for more research updates to come throughout this year!

Written by

SITE Staff


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