We all know the recruitment of good quality subject matter experts (SMEs) is one of the hardest parts of creating a solid curriculum. But what happens after you have the recruitment down? How do you reward them and keep them coming back to offer additional content opportunities for you?
Over the years I’ve found a couple successful ways to compensate your loyal SMEs. It doesn’t always have to be a monetary reward. We have to remember, as you navigate the recognition and reward, people like to be rewarded in different ways. Some like to be compensated for their time and it’s the only way they can justify teaching. While many SME’s are very willing to volunteer their time for a “shout-out” in your publication or at an awards banquet. Let’s breakdown a couple reward and recognition options:
1. Monetary Reward
Some subject matter experts love the gold ole’ do-re-mi. You can decide to pay them per person, honorarium (flat-fee), or a revenue share. In any of these cases you have to be very careful that you aren’t overextending your P&L’s. The best way to figure out a payment structure is to breakdown your costs and revenue:
This option can get tricky, so, let’s breakdown the payment options a bit more:
2. Information Sharing
Share your attendee list or a copy of the webinar recording to allow the SME to post it to their website. Some SME’s use a speaking opportunity as a way to gain business or recruit new clients. This option has no overhead for you and gives the speaker opportunity to network or share additional resources with the attendees to add more value. A couple ideas around the attendee list… give the SME the option to send one email to the attendees to limit their communication so the attendees don’t feel bombarded by the SME’s messaging. Another option is not to hand over the attendee list, but send the email to the attendees on behalf of the SME.
This option is a great way to watch your budget but give the SME the recognition they deserve so that they feel special and that you value their time. A couple ideas around recognition, is to highlight them in your magazine publication, in a speaker highlight on your blog, or during a recognition dinner.
Figure out how your speakers want to be rewarded for their time. If you don’t know, simply ask them! Don’t feel like you have to make a one-size-fits-all approach to compensation. Keep them happy once you recruit them; they will pay you back dividends with the member loyalty that will grow especially if their content is timely and high quality. If you make your SME’s feel special, they will pay you back ten-fold and keep your learners happy and wanting more!
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