Do any of you guys remember when you were younger and they had those ads in comic books where they showed you all of the cool shit you could earn doing door to door sales for some company? They had all sorts of things, from Gameboys to remote controlled cars to bikes. Any kid with a work ethic who wanted to get in on that would show it to their parents and say "Let me give this a shot!" and any parent who valued their kid's time and dignity would say "No. Those guys are taking you for a spin. Winter's around the corner, use your allowance to buy yourself a snow shovel, and pretty quickly you'll learn more about work and get more for your time than you would working for those clowns." Anyone? No? Must have just been me then.
Anyhow, over the past few years, a lot of my friends have worked for employers that have gone from legit, cash bonuses to something like I just described above. If you hit your goals, whatever they may be, you're distributed points to use in an online market place. I'm certain there are a few different companies that make this deal with employers, some more generous than others, but the basic idea is the same. Anyhow, some of my friends have shown me these things. Some are super lame, basically online liquidation companies where instead of anything cool, you'll get shit offered to you like scented candles, backpacks, dog leashes, etc. Which might be useful, yeah, but they don't really scream "motivation" or "validation."
One of my buds actually had his employer work with a slightly more worthwhile company. Over the course of like a year, he accumulated enough points to get himself an X-Box One, a 36" Television, and like six games. He thought he was rocking it. Then we did the math together and figured out how much all of this stuff was worth compared to how much he used to get with traditional bonuses. No lie, what his points were worth were legit 25% of what he used to get in actual cash. He was salty for weeks.
I can't blame him. It's bad enough we're losing hours, healthcare, wages, upward mobility, and respect. Now they're fucking with our bonuses and even restricting what we can buy with them.