Start Planning Now for Employee Appreciation Day

Human Resources, Management

​The first Friday in March is Employee Appreciation Day, and it’s never too early to start putting some plans in place. This year, it may help to think of “appreciation” as a unique form of “accommodation.” What are you doing to make sure each of your employees can work most productively within your company? Here are some ideas to get you started.

Hand out personalized notes. Sure, gifts are nice, but you simply cannot put a price on making a person feel seen. When you individually recognize your employees for specific ways they contribute to your company’s success, they will know they’re more than just cogs in a big wheel. If this idea isn’t feasible because of the size of your company, delegate the task to department managers or team leaders. (And don’t forget to write notes thanking them, too.)

Make the day last all week. Start your employee appreciation festivities on the Monday before Employee Appreciation Day. Do something little each day that builds up to your grand finale on Friday.

Give employees a way to show appreciation for each other. Co-workers often spend way more time with each other than they do with managers or supervisors, so they’re more tuned in to who is doing what. Create a system – either virtually or something physical in a common area – that lets employees recognize each other for day-to-day accomplishments. Call it “Cheers from Peers” and make sure you play along, too.

Show appreciation for your employees’ passions and causes. Use Employee Appreciation Day to recognize what your employees do when they’re not working. For example, give employees an extra day off to use for volunteering. Or sponsor an activity at an employees’ child’s school. Find out what makes your employees tick off the clock, and show them you appreciate them holistically.

Make it about them, not about you. Let your employees know you appreciate them as individuals by showing an interest in their long-term career goals. When you tailor employee training programs to what your employees want to learn, you’re showing them that you appreciate who they want to become as much as who they are right now. This is a win-win – training reduces turnover by providing growth opportunities within the company.

Studies in employee attitudes reveal that the more employees feel appreciated, the more likely they are to feel connected to the company’s vision. When your employees are engaged, they care about the company’s success and their own role in it.

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