Disclaimer: This is in Europe. After organizing event described below, managers (including mine) were asked to provide feedback on how to deal with the situation. We were in turn asked by our manager to provide ideas, and so this post is created.
We have an in-company social fund. There was some money left over from previous year, so the new DoO decided to use it for rewards for employees. The criteria chosen were to reward people who have, I think it's called, good work ethic (don't be late, keep your work-space clean, be polite to your co-workers, don't lie, etc.) After compiling a list of people that would fit those criteria, it was noticed that there is just under a hundred people that would be a good candidate - and the problem arises here, since that's more than they anticipated. If they split the money they had among so many people, they would basically get "spare change". Tightening the criteria was also not an option, since how do you measure, for example, if Bob is 2% more polite than Jane?
So the chosen solution was to simply draw 10 random names from the list, and if the idea caught on, just keep doing it, making sure everybody gets their chance (so if you won it now, you would have 2nd priority in the next draw, to first reward people who have won nothing yet).
However, some time after this, on a monthly meeting of highest management with employees, the following happened: employees may ask any question during those meetings, and if someone is shy, he can write it anonymously on a piece of paper and it will be read and answered. Over 60% of this meetings questions was basically boiling down to "it's unfair that not all who met the criteria won something". The management tried to explain that if they simply divided the money everybody would feel they got said spare change, and this was only a test run, which, if it catches on, will mean greater part of the funds dedicated to this cause. More and more employees however stated that it's unfair still and everybody should get something.
The end result is that the management agreed to pay whatever money people from the list would get extra by splitting the original amount on the next paycheck, and reconsider the implementation of the idea (which I think everybody knows is "probably scrap it, we're paying money to make people disgruntled").
So the question is: Is there some way to salvage this situation? Is it best to just forget about it and move on?