With Thanksgiving just around the corner, it seems the perfect time to write about appreciating the people who make our businesses successful – our employees. When it comes to appreciating those that make a profound difference in not only our businesses but our lives; I don’t believe we can show too much appreciation. Throughout the years, I have been struck by the thoughtfulness and sincerity with which my clients have shown appreciation to their employees. Here are some of their best practices:
1. Give your employees:
– a turkey and/or ham right before Thanksgiving so they don’t have to buy these food items which are often costly.
– a $10 or $15 grocery store gift card to off-set some of the grocery items they need to purchase for the holiday.
– holiday cash bonuses and include a hand-written note that says something like “I appreciate your efforts and am grateful to have you as an employee”.
2. Host an employee appreciation luncheon or dinner:
– During the event publicly thank your employees for all of their efforts.
– Include fun (free) raffles for employees to receive “appreciation” prizes.
– Put a number on the bottom of a chair at each table and the person sitting in that chair gets to take home the centerpiece or receive a prize.
– Invite your employees to your home from a homemade dinner that you host especially for them.
3. The day before a paid holiday, shut the office at
noon and give the employees the afternoon off with pay.
4. When you travel for business or pleasure, bring your employees back a small gift from the region. Some examples include candy or food for the office to share, bookmarks, or a small paperweight.
5. Allow employees to wear jeans on designated days throughout the year.
6. Once a month, provide an employee appreciation lunch.
7. Have a professional chef come to your office and prepare something extra special for breakfast – e.g., omelets, pancakes, or crepes.
8. Provide on-site, seated massages.
By making your employees feel appreciated, you will see a host of benefits. Employees who feel appreciated enjoy their work more and have increased productivity. They feel less stressed and are generally happier with their job. In addition, gestures of goodwill tend to garner loyalty, trust, and appreciation from employees.
Please share some of the ways in which you have shown your appreciation to your employees in the “reply” box below.