Incentive - December 2009 - (Page 4)

DECEMBER 2009 EDITOR’S NOTE The Age of Friending very year, the New Oxford American Dictionary (NOAD) announces its “Word of the Year.” For 2009, that word is a verb that everyone in our social-networking-obsessed culture knows: “Unfriend: to remove someone as a ‘friend’ on a social networking site such as Facebook or MySpace.” While it’s the first Internet-inspired term to earn Word of the Year status, it’s not the first to make it into the dictionary. “Unfriend” will appear in NOAD’s 2010 edition with other techy terms, including: hashtag: a # [hash] sign added to a word or phrase that enables Twitter users to search for tweets (postings on Twitter) that contain similarly tagged items and view thematic sets intexticated: distracted because of texting on a cell phone while driving netbook: a small, very portable laptop computer with limited memory paywall: a way of blocking access to a part of a Web site that is only available to paying subscribers sexting: the sending of sexually explicit texts and pictures by cell phone All of these words will have my Word spell-checker filling my documents with red squiggly lines from now until I get an upgrade—and maybe not even then. Both Facebook and MySpace still show up in my documents as spelling errors. Change is difficult. But it’s something that we all have to adapt to—even our software. And no one is too big for this reality. In the Headlines section on page 5, you’ll find stories about the two largest incentive companies in the industry adopting radical changes to keep up with the new realities of the marketplace. Carlson Marketing has been sold to Montreal-based loyalty management firm Groupe Aeroplan. And Maritz has teamed up with Synygy to develop programs that integrate both cash and non-cash awards. In our cover story, beginning on page 6, IBM is “friending” all of its employees in an effort to use social media as a means of engaging and developing its workforce. The technology giant is employing Web 2.0 platforms to create internal communities that do everything from recognizing workers, to encouraging innovation, to helping employees advance their skills. This poses a possibly interesting new phase in the evolution of HR terminology. Until about 40 years ago employees were simply “fired.” Later, they were “terminated.” Next came “corporate downsized.” Are we about to enter the age of “corporate unfriending?” Editorial and Executive Offices 770 Broadway, New York, NY 10003-9595 (646) 654-4500, Fax (646) 654-7650 Vice President & Group Publisher Nella Veldran (646) 654-7325, EDITORIAL Editor In Chief Vincent Alonzo (646) 654-7361, Senior Editor Leo Jakobson (646) 654-7642, Managing Editor William Ng (646) 654-4451, Contributing Editors Andrea Doyle (201) 483-7227,; Kinley Levack (646) 654-4436, Special Projects Director Karen Gines (646) 654-7647, ART Art Director Michael Strong (646) 654-7471, PRODUCTION Production Manager Anita Wise (646) 654-7298, CIRCULATION, SUBSCRIPTION & ADDRESS CHANGES (847) 763-9050, Fa x (847) 763-9037, E-mail LIST RENTAL Postal info (845) 731-2731, E-mail info (845) 731-3854 REPRINTS Diana Sholl (800) 501-9571 x162, PERMISSIONS & LICENSING Barbara Grieninger (646) 654-4675, MEDIA KIT ADVERTISING Associate Publisher Monique Agaliotis (646) 654-7638, Midwest Marvel Jasnoch (507) 663-1480, Florida Arthur Hyman (561) 736-5374, West Coast and Hawaii Peter Edmunds (714) 963-3499, International/Caribbean Diane DiMaggio (646) 654-7332, MARKETING Marketing Director Robert Kuwada (646) 654-5159, Vincent Alonzo Editor In Chief President: Greg Farrar Senior Vice President, Human Resources: Michael Alicea Senior Vice President, Brand Media: Andrew Bilbao Senior Vice President, Media & Entertainment: Gerry Byrne Senior Vice President, Finance: Sloane Googin Senior Vice President, Retail: David Loechner Senior Vice President, Content: Scott McKenzie Senior Vice President, Building & Design: Joe Randall Senior Vice President, Central Ser vices: Mary Kay Sustek Chief Operating Officer, Entertainment: Howard Appelbaum Vice President, Manufacturing & Distribution: Jennifer Grego Vice President, Licensing: Andrew Min Vice President, Client Marketing: Sue Tremblay Vice President, Audience Marketing: Joanne Wheatley 4 | Incentive | December 2009 |

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Incentive - December 2009

Incentive - December 2009
Editor’s Note: The Age of Friending
Cover Story: Social Media Can Engage Employees
Original Research: 2009 Corporate Gift IQ
Potentials: Here and Now
Travel News: Where to Go and How to Get There
Strategies: Morale-Boosting Leadership
Primer: Social Networking and Incentive Programs

Incentive - December 2009