Employee Appreciation Day is the first Friday in March, about three weeks away. If you haven’t celebrated this holiday in the past, or if you are looking for a new way to recognize staff with employee appreciation gifts, it is not too late to start planning an event. I would like to present three unique employee appreciation ideas in case you need a jump start on creating a memorable event this year.
One way to make a big deal out of Employee Appreciation Day is to create a themed celebration. One of my clients in the banking industry used a fortunate find theme where everyone could dress us in pirate-inspired costumes. All staff members received certificates of appreciation with treasure chest artwork on it. At the end of the day, everyone received a thank you note from the CEO for making the employee appreciation event a success and inviting them to order a gift of their choice online.
Another one of my clients that is a small business used a superhero theme last year for their appreciation celebration. The company’s Human Resources Director created different awards for each employee based on superheroes from different eras. Each employee was presented with a recognition letter that included a pop-out card. The card was designed like a membership card and detailed what made the individual that particular superhero. The back of the letter doubled as an order form for employees to redeem an appreciation gift of his or her choice.
If you work closely with employees, one special way to recognize them is to order an item you know they would enjoy and use. Instead of going online and paying for shipping and handling or to several different retailers to order your gifts, you can easily pick out items from our award collections and have them delivered in a short amount of time. A few of my contacts even go so far as to gift wrap the items as they arrive before presenting them to staff on Employee Appreciation Day.
Incorporating Awards into an Existing Program
If you already have an employee incentive program, celebrating Employee Appreciation Day can be as simple as awarding points to staff members. To go a step further, I have prepared a few emails for my clients that will go out on the third of March. These emails are brightly colored and contain a special message for each employee from a company leader. Each year the emails and the number of points associated with the event tend to vary so that the appreciation is less of an expectation and more about thanking employees for their contributions.
I hope that these three ideas inspire you to plan an event that truly demonstrates how much your company appreciates its employees. By coupling a creative idea with a valuable employee reward, you can make a lasting impression on employees who have survived the economic downturn while adding value to your organization.