This study investigates performance reward preferences of employees in Germany and the USA. The investigation uses the following three constructs: The Institutional Framework and its formal and informal implications for incentive compensation, Diminishing Marginal Utility of individuals related to performance rewards, and Incentive Schemes as motivational devices in organizations. Our empirical investigation is based upon survey data collected from employees of a MNC in Germany and the USA using an enriched form of Hofstede's cross-cultural questionnaire. Our results show that employees from these countries have different preferences on incentives and further that incentive plans designed for one country might have non-motivating consequences in the other. We also find that the logic of diminishing marginal utility applies to certain rewards. Referencing these results, we suggest a method for organizations to develop effective and efficient incentive systems.
institutional framework incentive compensation USA Germany performance eewards