BELL OAKS, an Atlanta-based executive search company, has its own form of currency: Bell Bucks. The company still rewards sales consultants with real money for closing a deal, but from October to December, employees can earn chances at gifts just for trying hard. The more work activities they complete--such as arranging an interview or going on a client visit--the more times they get to draw from a bag of Bell Bucks, which have different denominations. At the company's holiday party, CEO Price Harding auctions off $15,000 to $20,000 worth of prizes, from bread makers and VCRs to laptops and microwave ovens.
Though still a small company with 65 employees, Bell Oaks has been recognized by Inc. magazine as one of the fastest growing privately held companies in the country. According to Harding, Bell Oaks expects to double in size and make between $7 million and $10 million next year. As the company grows, Harding hopes the Bell Bucks prizes will, too. "My dream," he says, "is to auction off a Jeep Ranger."