Does your share plan pass our three question test?

25 January 2021

By Rebecca Mitchell

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Employee share plans are in Eximia’s DNA, so we know the huge impact they can have on company culture and employees’ wellbeing – and in today’s ever-changing environment, that’s more important than ever.

Being engaged with equity has the power to motivate, support financial wellbeing and foster greater loyalty, as well as align employees with a company’s purpose and long-term strategy.

To get the most out of your plans and deliver real change, a comprehensive communications strategy with quality content and visual impact is vital.

However, with the extraordinary pressures placed on everyone from the start of 2020, you may need to challenge whether your plans are still fit for purpose. So, here are three questions companies should ask themselves today, to make sure they are best set for success:

 

1. Is your share plan(s) inclusive?

Inclusivity and developing a cohesive company-wide culture now falls under the responsibility of the board – and making awards to colleagues on a broader basis has the power to help. All employee share plans can foster a feeling of togetherness, which in the current climate has never been so important. You can further support this cause with an inclusive tone of voice within communications.

 

2. Are existing performance conditions having a negative impact?

Due to additional external pressures brought on by COVID-19 and the subsequent economic downturn, your share plan could actually be de-motivating colleagues if conditions are now impossible to meet. So, it’s worth checking what flexibility is available in the plan rules, should the company wish to make some adjustments to accommodate this. If your share price has taken a tumble, you could consider the impact of making new awards – more shares may be issued, impacting dilution limits. You’ll need to consider how you position this as part of your messaging.

 

3. Can you make awards on a more regular basis?

More frequency and structure could help motivate colleagues, keeping them engaged with regular activity. Communications mirroring this – going beyond functional conversations – helps make share ownership more meaningful.

 

So, in conclusion…

Your plans need to reflect the world around us, so make sure your company asks these questions and makes any necessary changes.

Coupled with clear communication, including how share plans can change and develop over time – especially in times of uncertainty – is key to ensuring colleagues understand what they mean for them and stay engaged. This helps boost the chance of share plan and company success.

If you’d like support in communicating the launch of a new or refreshed employee share plan – improving how you cut through the noise and simplify the complex – Eximia can create tailor made campaigns that inspire conversations and drive greater engagement for your business. Get in touch today so we can explore your current challenges and how we could help.

Rebecca Mitchell

Relationship & Project Manager – Chartered CoSec and share plans expert

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