Difference Between Award and Reward

Difference Between Award and Reward

What is the difference between award and reward? You see, there is no doubt at all that many people have had to struggle with the disparity between the two nouns/verbs. While some of them use the Internet to figure out the disparity, others have kept it to themselves. Well, regardless of the divide you find yourself, we strongly believe that you reading this piece because you have the same challenge.

But then, the good thing is that we are going to help you with the difference between reward and award, thus solving that problem which you hitherto found daunting. So, after going through this concise piece, you will be able to help other people spot the difference between award and reward. But just before we delve into the disparity, let’s kick of this piece with their definitions.

Definition of Award

Award is an honor given to someone (or organization) in order to recognize their effort or contributions. It could also be a prize, trophy, medal, or plaque. In many companies, for instance, people receive it at gala nights for their inputs towards the success of the company. Individuals don’t give wards, but institutions and organizations do.

It could be a verb or a noun depending on the context. Apart from churches or firms, bodies and countries equally confer them. For instance, in the creative art industry, people receive it for their exceptional work of art. In some cases, they come as plaques and financial benefits.

With respect to countries, the governments confer it on their citizens for the same purpose. Indeed, it is a prestigious thing to be recognized and given one for your efforts/contributions. In the United States, music makers and singers receive the Grammy Awards. In such scenarios, the beneficiaries receive stunning plaques, which conspicuously display why the receiver deserves it.  Although the definition of award may vary from one organization to another, they often have the same objective: Recognizing and honoring people for their excellence.

Definition of Reward

On the other hand, a reward is a physical object given to someone in appreciation of their service or contribution. The thing could be money paid in cash or kind. It can be given to people because of the good or evil they have done in the past. So, looking at the definition of reward, you can rephrase it as a tangible object or an action returned due to what the receiver has done in the past. It could be a verb or a noun depending on the context that it is being used.

A company can do this by promoting an employee who has been exceptional at worker. In a similar vein, a company can also reward a lazy worker with demotion or sack. Basically, it comes in two ways. Also, around the world, the security agencies often place a bounty on wanted people, promising to handsomely reward anyone who has useful information that will lead to their arrest. So, the context it is applied aren’t the same.

Award vs Reward Comparison Table

Basis of ComparisonAwardReward
Motive Appreciation or recognition of positive contribution or effortRecognition or appreciation for either positive or negative action of the receiver
Decision makers A committee or jury Does not necessarily involve a body
Items involved Plaques, money, medals, trophy, grant, etc.Money, promotion, bonus or token
ProcessPeople often compete for itMost times, there is no competition

Conclusion of the Main Difference Between Award vs Reward

In summary, there is denying the fact that when we dig deep into award vs reward we will notice some similarities. However, we must state here that there are many disparities between them. More importantly, the critical difference that these two words have lies in the intent/motive: Why is it be given? No doubt, that is the major factor that separates the two words. Keep in mind that both of them can represented with money. For instance, there are cases where people are given prizes for coming out the winner in essay writing contests.  

Basically, when you look at the basis for comparison in the table, you will understand that essay writing competition perfectly satisfies the four conditions. This means that the winner gets recognized. But just before then, a committee or jury meets to determine who the winner is. Yes, there is a competition and a writer emerged the winner at the end of it.

While award is an honor, the same cannot be said of the other. Most times, a medal, trophy or plaque plus prize money is given to the receiver of an award, but in the case of reward, nobody gets a plaque, medal or trophy.