Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Employee Appreciation : Small gestures that will have a big impact on your employees

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Maya Angelou said it best: “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

Check out our list below for a few ideas to help express your appreciation for your employees and help them feel valued at the workplace. You want to keep your best employees engaged and content, and the following ideas are a great start.
1. Recognize your team members as individuals - To boost team morale, it’s great to do something for your entire team—like catering lunch or donuts for breakfast. But if you’re aiming to show your appreciation for an individual, it can easily get lost in these types of group celebrations. Team birthdays and work anniversaries are good ways to make individual employees feel special on their big day. Host a team lunch, throw a small party, pass out cupcakes – there are many simple ways to let them know you care.
2. Be specific with praise - Leaders need to be specific in expressing their appreciation so that it reinforces behaviors through positive feedback for the employee.

3. Give impromptu time off - Spontaneous late arrival or early departure days are always a motivator. For example, send a quick email that says, “It’s a beautiful afternoon. Go enjoy it.” It doesn't have to be a routine or regular thing but it is most valued when it’s unexpected for those hard working employees.

4. Be transparent - Company leadership should keep their employees in the loop and let them know what is going on with the company. It generates a 'we're in this together' environment.

5. Feed your employees -  One way to an employee's heart is through their stomach. Putting sweet treats in the break room, or setting up a “Weclome to Work” station at the employee entrance with coffee, juice, donuts for the a.m. or catering a lunch on Employee Appreciation Day – it's an easy way to say 'thank you' for the work you do.

6. Company apparel - Who doesn’t love a free t-shirt or ball cap? Offering employees free company apparel and other logo merchandise can be a simple, inexpensive way to say, ‘thank you’.

7. Certificate of achievement - Present a certificate in honor of a specific achievement. Highlight your employees’ achievements by recognizing them in a company meeting, newsletter or email. Encourage peer-to-peer recognition, develop a program that lets employees give each other on-the-spot accolades on the community bulletin board or internal website. This allows employees to recognize their peers directly. Each month, the employees receiving awards could be entered into a drawing for a gift card or other award.

8. Jeans day - Give out coupons that allow employees to wear jeans on a day of their choosing, or designate an all-employee jeans day.

9. Work-from-home day - Remember significant events in your employees’ personal lives, such as a child starting kindergarten, and give them a work-from-home day so they can participate without worrying about coming into the office on time.

10. Special projects - Give your employees an opportunity to work on special projects beyond their regular responsibilities. Doing this will allow them to grow, and will also demonstrate your confidence in their abilities to do a good job.

11. Off-campus outing - Set up an off-site bowling, sporting, theatre or other event to recognize an entire department/work group (also great for team building).

12. Post team achievements in break rooms - Post team results in common areas, including the names of each member. It may be a chart or graph that shows positive improvement, or it may be a simple description of a project that highlights the benefits to the organization.

Remember, it is the little things that can go a long way toward making your employees feel wanted and needed at the workplace, which will ultimately improve their productivity and engagement.

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