Employee Appreciation Day just came and went but is a great reminder that developing employee engagement is an ongoing process, not a one day a year deal. Concerned that you need a big budget to recognize and engage employees? Not to worry. Recognition comes in many forms, but it doesn’t have to cost a fortune to be effective and build a culture of respect and gratitude.
The simplest form of low-cost recognition is thanking employees and colleagues for their hard work and successes. A thoughtful hand-written thank you note from a direct manager or senior executive is worth more than anything. It’s a keepsake that makes employees feel valued and appreciated. Use your gratitude generously and train and expect managers to do the same. You’ll be amazed at the positive impact gratitude can have on your culture and bottom-line.
Some forms of recognizing employee performance cost money but pay bigger dividends than the investment. Training is one way to recognize and reward employees for meeting goals or exceeding expectations while helping them to improve employment skills and prepare for career advancement. Asking what employees like in surveys or new hire orientations gives employers the information they need to recognize good work with rewards that have meaning to employees. Those rewards don’t have to cost a lot of money.
By knowing employees’ favorite candy, hobbies, and leisure activities enables employers to provide small perks that are personal, showing employees they care. Work-place flexibility, workplace giving and wellness initiatives all have high perceived value for their relative cost. Nancy Mann Jackson, writing for Entrepreneur, says that when there’s no money for raises, it’s important for employers to provide incentives or they’ll lose valuable employees.
Recognition events such as pizza parties or happy hours enable employers to recognize when teams meet work goals or when employees put forth extra effort. Letting employees celebrate together in a social gathering improves working relationships, helps teams and managers bond, and provides some relaxation and enjoyment.
Free Ways to Recognize Employees
Kevin Kruse, author of “Employee Engagement 2.0,” says feeling appreciated is a top driver of employee engagement. He notes that employee appreciation doesn’t have to cost anything but yields big benefits. His recent list of low and no cost ways to reward employees includes offering sincere thanks with a handshake, throwing a party to honor employees, and praising employees in a company-wide email.
National Compliment Day
In the course of business operations and growing a business, it’s easy to forget the little things that matter, like “Thanks!” and “Good job!” Debby Hoffman and Kathy Chamberlin created National Compliment Day in 1998 to remind people of the power of compliments to create bonds and good feelings. National Compliment Day is at the end of January each year, but don’t wait all year to compliment employees. Make it a habit to look for and compliment good work, extra effort, and special achievements to show employees you are aware of their contributions to your company and appreciate them.
To learn more about building a culture of appreciation in your workplace, download our free guide to “Workplace Gratitude” and start sharing your gratitude today!
About gThankYou, LLC
Turkey Gift Certificates and Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificates by gThankYou! are two of America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any Brand (Turkey or Turkey Or Ham), at virtually any Grocery Store in the U.S.
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