by Lisa Grimaldi | May 01, 2007

Maritz Inc., the incentive firm based in Fenton, Mo., has released new results from a fall 2006 study suggesting that different rewards have different effects on employees, based on personality types.

The study, which asked 1,003 full-time employees about their reward preferences, identified six distinct personalities.

* Award seekers are motivated by monetary and trophy value; their reward preferences are gift cards and travel.

* Nesters prefer rewards that don’t take them away from home, such as flexible work hours, days off or dinner out with their families.

* Bottom liners care most about the monetary value of their reward and prefer cash bonuses or programs awarding points that they can accumulate to obtain rewards.

* Freedom yearners prefer a flexible work environment over any other reward.

* Praise cravers are most interested in being acknowledged for their work and seek verbal, written or formal praise from managers or informal praise by peers.

* Upward movers are best motivated by status rewards, such as dining with company executives or mentoring other employees.

The largest group was the award seekers, who made up 22 percent of those polled.Upward movers were the smallest group, at 8 percent of respondents.