• How to Cultivate a Joyful Employee Experience

    How do you cultivate a joyful employee experience for your team?

    Is joy possible at work? YES! Help create a joyful employee experience for your team. (Image via AJ Cann, Flickr)

    Joy isn’t an emotion we typically associate with the workplace — but it should be! Cultivating a joyful employee experience is the kind of investment that results in long-term engagement.
    Focusing on employee experience is gaining traction as the new, more sustainable way to tackle low engagement.
    “Inside of most organizations around the world, employee engagement has simply become a way to force employees to work in outdated workplace practices while giving them perks to make them happy,” author Jacob Morgan writes for Inc.
    A perks-focused strategy is “a short-term adrenaline shot designed to boost the annual employee engagement scores,” but it won’t have lasting impact without a more holistic approach.
    “Instead,” Morgan writes, “organizations are shifting to employee experience, which is the long-term organizational design that creates new workplace practices around people.”
    Base your employee experience on building, creating and choosing joy. A joyful employee experience is key to a productive and happy workplace culture.
    In a commencement speech to 4,700 students at the University of California at Berkeley last year, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg brought up the practice of joy. It’s vital to resilience and overcoming failure, she said.
    “In the face of any challenge — you can choose joy and meaning,” she said. “You are not born with a fixed amount of resilience. Like a muscle, you can build it up, draw on it when you need it … In that process you will figure out who you really are — and you just might become the very best version of yourself.”
    (more…)

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  • 11 TED Talks to Inspire Workplace Culture

    Ted Talks to build better workplace culture

    Want a better workplace culture? Get inspired first by pioneers like software titan Stephanie Shirley, pictured here. (Photo via Steve Jurvetson, Flickr)

    Want to build a better workplace culture? Join the club. The way we work is changing, and companies are scrambling to catch up.
    “The necessity of workplace culture is a recent phenomenon,” according to a column in The Commentator. “It’s clear that in order to attract, retain and engage the modern workforce, companies must intensify their focus on improving company culture.”
    That’s because employees in all industries now are expecting work that is meaningful and engaging — and to be appreciated for it, beyond a paycheck.
    Employees are also “pushing employers to forego traditional structures,” according to Gallup research.
    But change isn’t happening fast enough for most workers. Two-thirds of U.S. workers still aren’t engaged at work, a figure that hasn’t budged much in years.
    Don’t be discouraged! Watch these TED Talks for fresh ideas and new perspectives on building a better workplace culture through better leadership, motivation, appreciation, mindfulness, creativity and more. You’ll feel re-engaged and inspired to share and cultivate improvements to your workplace. Rediscover how easy it is to make a difference.

    12 TED Talks to Inspire a Better Workplace Culture

    1. Dame Stephanie Shirley: Why Do Ambitious Women Have Flat Heads?
    Called “the most successful tech entrepreneur you never heard of,” 83-year-old Stephanie Shirley is a pioneer of flexible work and allowing employees to work from home. She started an all-woman software company in the U.K. in the 1960s that went on to be valued at $3 billion and made millionaires of 70 of her team members.
    2. Carl Honoré: In Praise of Slowness
    If your team is feeling burned out and overwhelmed, watch this talk about the value of a slowed-down mindset. “We’re so marinated in the culture of speed that we almost fail to notice the toll it takes,” journalist Carl Honoré says. Fast-forward to 9:20 for his take on applying slowness in the workplace specifically.
    3. Apollo Robbins: The Art of Misdirection
    In this nine-minute TED Talk, sleight-of-hand artist Apollo Robbins demonstrates his pickpocket techniques. But really, he’s demonstrating the power of attention. He asks, “If you could control somebody’s attention, what would you do with it?” In the workplace, leaders have the power to direct employees’ attention. What are your employees’ paying attention to?
    4. Dan Ariely: What Makes Us Feel Good About Our Work?
    Behavioral economist Dan Ariely explores what really motivates people to work (spoiler: it isn’t money!). His talk is #1 on management expert Dan Pink’s list of favorite TED Talks about work.
    5. David Steindl-Rast: Want to Be Happy? Be Grateful
    Monk and interfaith scholar David Steindl-Rast says we all have one longing in common: to be happy. He challenges us to think of each moment as an opportunity to “stop, look, go” — and be grateful. The assumption that gratitude leads from happiness is misguided, he says. In fact, gratitude is the seed for happiness on an individual, organizational and communal level.
    6. David Blaine: How I Held My Breath for 17 Minutes
    What makes employees want to do their best, and what do they need to do it? Magician and endurance artist David Blaine is an extreme case. In this video, he explains how he managed to beat the world record and hold his breath for 17 minutes on live television. But even if most work isn’t this extreme, there’s a lesson here for managers in how creativity and high performance flourish — Blaine has a clear goal, the freedom to be curious and experiment, and the resources to train himself to be better. And that, he says, is magic.
    7. Simon Sinek: How Great Leaders Inspire Action
    Why are some leaders and companies so much more innovative, inspirational and successful? The secret is in what leadership expert Simon Sinek calls “the golden circle.” And it’s the key to better employee experience and better workplace culture.
    8. Martin Seligman: The New Era of Positive Psychology
    Positive psychology is the scientific study of the strengths that enable individuals and communities to thrive. As a field of study, positive psychology began in the 1990s. Research includes the effects of positive psychology in the workplace. In this TED Talk, positive psychology founder Martin Seligman explains its history and the science behind it.
    9. Roselinde Torres: What It Takes to Be a Great Leader
    Roselinde Torres has spent decades observing what makes great leaders, by working inside Fortune 500 companies and coaching more than 200 CEOs. One interesting takeaway from this talk: traditional assessments like annual performance reviews may give you false-positives and stunt your company’s growth. The better investment of your time is in people and building a strong, diverse network.
    10. Barry Schwartz: The Way We Think About Work Is Broken
    Psychologist Barry Schwartz describes “idea technology” and how it relates to attitudes about work and leadership. False ideas about employee motivation are holding companies back, he says. At the end, he challenges viewers: “Just what kind of human nature do you want to help design?”
    11. Shonda Rhimes: My Year of Saying Yes to Everything
    “Scandal” and “Grey’s Anatomy” writer and producer Shonda Rhimes loves the “hum” of working, but one day she lost it. In this engaging talk, she describes her journey getting it back.

    Free Resource: Your Day-to-Day Employee Engagement Calendar

    We all need inspiration to make employee appreciation a daily habit. gThankYou’s Day-to-Day Employee Celebration Calendar gives you the tools and inspiration to build a culture of appreciation every day of the year. Be inspired; download yours today, absolutely free.

    “In life, one has a choice to take one of two paths: to wait for some special day — or to celebrate each special day.” – Rasheed Ogunlaru, coach and author

    Here’s to a happier workplace!

    2022 Employee Celebration Calendar - Free Download from gThankYou Employee Gifts

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  • Holidays that Boost Employee Wellbeing: ‘Walk to Work Day’

    Employee wellbeing starts with simple things such as encouraging colleagues to walk to work.

    Celebrate Walk to Work Day and other health-focused holidays throughout the year to boost employee wellbeing.

    Walk to Work Day and other regular health-focused celebrations help promote employee wellbeing year-round in the workplace.
    Held every year on April 7, Walk to Work Day is an easy opportunity to educate employees on the benefits of regular exercise. (It’s also World Health Day!)
    Walking to work has environmental benefits, too.
    “The heart of Walk to Work Day isn’t just based in our physical and emotional health, but actually concerns itself with the health of the planet as a whole. Prevention magazine promoted this holiday in 2004 and it was quickly picked up by the US Department of Health and Human Services,” according to DaysOfTheYear.com.
    Walking to work — even part-way, for employees who commute long distances — has benefits that can directly boost employee wellbeing and build workplace productivity, performance and culture.
    Benefits of a walking habit include better mood and increased creativity, metabolism, mindfulness and motivation, according to the Prevention article “7 Incredible Results You’ll Get From Walking 30 Minutes a Day.”
    Walk to Work Day is just one of many unofficial holidays throughout the year that are perfect for promoting employee wellbeing. HR experts are calling 2017 “the year for wellness” — read on for more health-focused holidays and to find out what makes a high-value employee wellbeing program.

    2017: ‘The Year for Wellness’

    Companies are doubling down on prioritization of employee wellbeing in 2017, according to Amy McDonough, vice president and general manager of Fitbit Group Health. In a guest post for HR Dive, she says 2017 will be “the year for wellness.”
    From 1996 to 2016, the percentage of companies offering wellness resources and information increased from 54 percent to 72 percent, and companies offering weight-loss programs increased from 29 percent to 31 percent.
    Looking ahead to the coming year, McDonough quotes a survey of company leaders. More than two-thirds of those surveyed said they plan to expand emotional, mental and financial health programming for employees.
    Workplace wellness doesn’t exist in a vacuum. Employee wellbeing and employee engagement “go hand-in-hand for producing great performance and strong workplaces,” McDonough writes, citing observable correlation between employee benefits satisfaction and job satisfaction.
    The most effective employee wellbeing programs are tailored to meet employees where they are, according to McDonough:

    “Thinking about how to effectively connect with your people is critical, whether it’s the office ultramarathoner or the person just starting their fitness journey. There is huge potential in getting someone to take that first step.

    Why it’s Worth the Investment

    The financial incentive for companies to develop employee wellbeing programming isn’t just speculation, according to a recent research study by Welltok.
    The study found that a company with 10,000 employees can drive $3 million in new value by raising engagement through a wellness program for workers and dependents.
    “High value activities” identified by the study include improving mental health, optimizing medication use and managing chronic health conditions. Walking is one affordable, effective way to manage chronic health conditions, for example.
    In another study of business leaders, this one by Virgin Pulse, 78 percent reported employee wellbeing is a critical part of their business plans. The survey of 600 global organizations also found that among respondents with holistic wellness programs, 74 percent saw an increase employee satisfaction.
    “Wellness programs that raise employee satisfaction can also increase productivity, which, in turn, has bottom-line benefits for organizations. And mental health awareness is just as important for ensuring employee wellbeing as physical health,” according to an HR Dive analysis of the study.

    Upcoming Holidays to Promote Employee Wellbeing

    Missed your chance with Walk to Work Day? There’s always next year. And keep these upcoming wellness-focused celebrations on your radar:

    • Microvolunteering Day (April 15): Helping others doesn’t just benefit recipients. It’s good for volunteers’ mental health and fosters a culture of gratitude.
    • Kickball Day (April 20): Play this classic game as a team to get exercise and bring back childhood memories.
    • Earth Day (April 22): Be kind to the planet and get physically active. Volunteer with employees on a park cleanup or other environmentally friendly project.
    • World Laughter Day (May 7): Laughing is good for the mind and body, plus it builds teamwork and improves collaboration.
    • Bike to Work Week (May 15-19): Like Walk to Work Day, Bike to Work Week is a practical way to promote fitness with employees and partner with the community.
    • National Employee Health & Fitness Day (May 17): Get moving! Be sure to award employees for their involvement in fitness activities. May is National Employee Health & Fitness Month, so make it a celebration that lasts.
    • Take Your Dog to Work Day (June 23): Pet-friendly workplaces are on the rise, and for good reason: it’s good for morale!

    Don’t forget to thank employees for their participation in wellness activities. For the greatest impact, have company leaders participate alongside employees.

    Free Resource: Your Day-to-Day Employee Engagement Calendar

    We all need inspiration to make employee appreciation a daily habit. gThankYou’s 2017 Day-to-Day Employee Celebration Calendar gives you the tools and inspiration to build a culture of appreciation every day of the year. Be inspired; download yours today, absolutely free.

    “In life, one has a choice to take one of two paths: to wait for some special day — or to celebrate each special day.” – Rasheed Ogunlaru, coach and author

    Here’s to a happier workplace in 2017!
    Click to download your FREE 2017 Guide to Building an Everyday Culture of Appreciation!

    About gThankYou, LLC

    Turkey Gift CertificatesHam Gift Certificates, and Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificates by gThankYou are America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any brand (Turkey, Ham, or Turkey Or Ham), at virtually any grocery store in the U.S.
    gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime. gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and our free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo. And, nearly all orders ship same day.

    To learn more about gThankYou, watch our “About Us” Video and visit gThankYou today!

    Learn More About gThankYou – Watch Our “About Us” Video:

    gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin. Contact: Rick Kiley, Chief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-609-2234.

    Follow the Company Blog — “Celebrating Work”
    Join the Conversation @gThankYou

    “G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.

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  • Let’s Talk: World Health Day in the Workplace

    world health day in the workplace

    Start a conversation with employees to mark World Health Day in the workplace on April 7. (Photo via hoffnungsschimmer, Flickr)

    Start a conversation with employees to mark World Health Day in the workplace this week.
    Held every year on April 7, World Health Day is an initiative of the World Health Organization (WHO) to mobilize action around a specific health topic of concern to people all over the world.
    The 2017 theme is combating depression, with the slogan “Let’s Talk.”
    Depression affects people of all ages, from all walks of life and in all countries, according to WHO’s free campaign essentials for World Health Day. Depression creates fallout in all aspects of a person’s life, even on the job.
    “It causes mental anguish and impacts people’s ability to carry out even the simplest everyday tasks, with sometimes devastating consequences for relationships with family and friends and the ability to earn a living,” according to WHO.
    The goal of World Health Day 2017 is to promote a better understanding of what depression is and how it can be prevented and treated, as well as reduce stigma associated with the condition.
    Celebrating World Health Day is an opportunity to help your workforce be more mindful of depression in the workplace. It’s a chance to connect with your team, start a conversation on employee wellbeing, and do activities together for better mental and emotional health. World Health Day also fits well with another awareness-raising initiative happening in April, Stress Awareness Month.

    Why Depression is a Workplace Concern

    Depression is a costly drain on American companies. It’s also surprisingly common, particularly among part-time workers.
    According to Gallup research, 11 percent of full-time workers say they have been diagnosed with depression at some point in their life. Among part-time employees, it’s 16.5 percent. At any given time, 6.1 percent of all U.S. workers are currently being treated for depression.
    Depressed workers report missing weeks of work annually due to poor mental health. Major depressive disorder is the leading cause of disability among adults 15 to 44 years old, according to the National Institute of Mental Health.
    All together, one in eight U.S. workers has been diagnosed with depression, missing an estimated 68 million additional days of work each year than their counterparts who have not been depressed.
    Depression is devastating for employees and employers alike. Gallup estimates a cost of more than $23 billion in lost productivity annually to U.S. employers.
    Are employees on your team grappling with emotional health issues? According to Forbes, telltale signs of a depressed employee include:

    • increasing frequency of sick days or absences for other reasons
    • loss in motivation
    • abrupt changes in social behavior
    • forgetfulness and trouble concentrating
    • increased errors
    • excessive yawning and other signs of lethargy

    Keep in mind that depressed employees may be hesitant to disclose a diagnosis or admit to a health problem.
    “The stigma surrounding depression is not what it was a generation ago (thanks to greater public awareness and the mainstreaming of antidepressants), but it remains strong enough that most depressed employees would probably hesitate to reveal their condition to bosses and coworkers for fear of being marginalized professionally or being seen as weak,” according to the Health article “Depression in the Workplace: Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell?”
    Whether employees feel comfortable discussing mental health with a boss or HR depends on your company culture. More companies are realizing the benefits of opening these lines of communication, with the ultimate goal of helping employees get the help they need so health issues are no longer a distraction.
    “Employers are increasingly aware that promoting employee mental health is good for business,” according to Health. “A happy employee is more productive, so it makes sense for employers to help people in need of services to find those services.”

    Start a Conversation with Employees: “Let’s Talk”

    Your job as an employer is not to diagnose or control treatment.
    “Rather than be controlling, employers should provide a supportive environment,” Alberto Colombi, corporate medical director at Pittsburgh-based PPG Industries, tells Health. PPG Industries employs 34,000 and has been recognized for its commitment to employee mental health.
    Help build that supportive environment this week by encouraging managers, supervisors and other workplace leaders to start a conversation with employees about mental health.
    Be inspired by Psychology Today’s Joni Johnston to start this conversation one-on-one:
    1. Make the first move
    “Most depressed employees would rather eat dirt than admit to their managers that they’re depressed,” Johnston writes. Some of this fear is justified: “For every story I’ve heard about a supportive manager or caring HR professional, I’ve heard ten from employees who felt their disclosure led to being teased, overly scrutinized, or discriminated against.”
    So make the first move. Let the employee know you’re there to listen and assist them in finding help, if they need it.
    2. Show concern and empathy
    Share your concerns openly but base them on observable or documented behaviors like tardiness, customer complaints or increased absences or work errors.
    Be sure to acknowledge these problems as changes in behavior, not the norm: “This isn’t like you. You’re normally the first in to work and the last person in the department to make mistakes.”
    3. Share information
    Provide information to the employee about health benefits, including resources like your company’s employee assistance program, or point them to outside professional counseling or a community clinic. Give them time to consider and ask questions.
    4. Reinforce need for improvement
    Keep the conversation focused on how much you’re invested in helping the employee get back on track. Offer your ear but do not push the employee to discuss or disclose anything that may make them uncomfortable. Ultimately, this is about their work performance and not their personal life.
    5. Express gratitude
    End your talk by thanking the employee for having what was probably a difficult conversation for them. Remember you are there to support, so reiterate how much you value them as an employee. Share your appreciation for their past accomplishments.

    World Health Day in the Workplace for Everyone

    Beyond one-on-one conversations with individual employees, seek to start a workplace-wide conversation on depression this week for World Health Day.
    The World Health Organization has free educational materials to help organizations observe World Health Day, including posters, logos and quick facts on depression in multiple languages.
    Activity suggestions include discussion forums, sporting events, art competitions, coffee mornings, concerts, sponsored activities — “anything that contributes to a better understanding of depression and how it can be prevented and treated.”
    “Think about involving your organization’s champions, especially if they are influential among those you are trying to reach.”
    Your company can also join in the greater World Health Day conversation happening on social media. Get involved by using the hashtags #letstalk, #depression and #mentalhealth.

    Free Resource: Your Day-to-Day Employee Engagement Calendar

    We all need inspiration to make employee appreciation a daily habit. gThankYou’s 2017 Day-to-Day Employee Celebration Calendar gives you the tools and inspiration to build a culture of appreciation every day of the year. Be inspired; download yours today, absolutely free.

    “In life, one has a choice to take one of two paths: to wait for some special day — or to celebrate each special day.” – Rasheed Ogunlaru, coach and author

    Here’s to a happier workplace in 2017!
    Click to download your FREE 2017 Guide to Building an Everyday Culture of Appreciation!

    About gThankYou, LLC

    Turkey Gift CertificatesHam Gift Certificates, and Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificates by gThankYou are America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any brand (Turkey, Ham, or Turkey Or Ham), at virtually any grocery store in the U.S.
    gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime. gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and our free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo. And, nearly all orders ship same day.

    To learn more about gThankYou, watch our “About Us” Video and visit gThankYou today!

    Learn More About gThankYou – Watch Our “About Us” Video:

    gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin. Contact: Rick Kiley, Chief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-609-2234.

    Follow the Company Blog — “Celebrating Work”
    Join the Conversation @gThankYou

    “G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.

    Read Full Post
  • 7 Days to a More Mindful Workplace

    Be mindful. 7 Days to a more mindful workplace.

    April is Stress Awareness Month. Build a more mindful workplace daily by focusing on wellbeing and gratitude with employees. (Image via libookperson, Flickr)

    A mindful workplace is your buffer against the kind of employee stress that disrupts productivity, drains happiness and drives high turnover.
    With Stress Awareness Month coming up in April, now’s the time to plan workplace activities focused on stress awareness — and to give employees the tools they need to handle stress before it takes over.
    The first step toward busting stress is mindfulness.
    “This is why April is Stress Awareness Month. The key to minimizing unhelpful stress is to first become aware of it. We cannot change what we cannot see,” author Melissa Heisler writes in her HuffPo article, “Make the Most of Stress Awareness Month.”
    Ultimately, stress itself is not the issue. Stress is an inevitable part of life! It’s how we handle stressors that makes the difference between healthy and dysfunctional.
    Workplace leaders set the tone for how to handle workplace stress.
    In an un-mindful workplace where leaders feed stress, employees are more likely to react to stress with anger, ingratitude, burnout, overwork or disengagement. Actuarial research shows that self-medicating with unhealthy habits like smoking and binge drinking are also common outcomes of unmanaged workplace stress. The results can be disastrous for your company culture and business, as disengaged employees “check out” from doing their best work.
    In today’s workplace, “it’s unlikely the pace or intensity of work will change much anytime soon,” according to the Harvard Business Review.
    But “there’s a growing body of research that suggests certain types of development activities can effectively build the capacity for resilience,” Wisdom Labs co-founder Rich Fernandez writes for HBR. Investing in employee personal growth and development “is the first step in unleashing creativity, enabling potential and supporting sustainable productivity.”
    Start the process in April with a week (or more!) devoted to building a more mindful workplace. Read on for Stress Awareness Month activity ideas.

    7 Days of Workplace Mindfulness

    According to the American Institute of Stress, up to 90 percent of all visits to primary care physicians are for stress-related disorders, ranging from stomach trouble to heart disease, and job-related stress costs American businesses about $150 billion annually.
    These are daunting statistics, but they can be turned around. At Aetna Insurance, for example, company mindfulness programs for 12,000 employees showed an average of 62 minutes per week of enhanced productivity, saving the company $3,000 per employee annually. Other studies show a substantial reduction in turnover, fewer sick days taken, boosted profits and overall better performance and sustainable engagement from workplace mindfulness and stress-reduction campaigns.
    Take these simple, cost-effective steps to develop daily habits in your workplace that will feed a culture of mindfulness and gratitude — not stress!
    Day 1: Educate and Organize
    Download AmeriHealth’s free Stress Awareness Employer Toolkit to learn more about workplace stress and get practical tools for organizing Stress Awareness Month activities for employees. The AmeriHealth toolkit provides activity ideas, educational payroll stuffers, assessment quizzes, promotional materials and more. Federal Occupational Health also has a free stress-awareness toolkit with posters, email templates and other useful, ready-to-go graphics.
    Day 2: Take the “24-Hour Mini Mindful Moment Challenge”
    Stress can be triggered and flare in a matter of seconds. Line Goguen-Hughes at Mindful.org recommends countering these stress flare-ups with mindfulness “mini-moments”:

    “What if during multiple moments of the day you had a mini-moment practice where you brought your mind to the present moment and checked in with yourself. What would change? … In the middle of an important business meeting, a mini-moment is prompted and you notice your shoulder’s tightening and your mind worrying that you’re going to have to speak soon, and you choose to take a few breaths and roll your shoulders.”

    Goguen-Hughes suggests we challenge ourselves: take a “mini-moment” of mindfulness once an hour during the day, to stay mindful and ward off stress with calming techniques.

    7 days to building a mindful workplace

    Group mindfulness exercises, like the one these employees at Pan-American Health Organization are doing, are a great way to beat stress. (Photo via pahowho, Flickr)

    Day 3: Embrace All Forms of Mindfulness
    You don’t have to train your employees to be yogis on a mountaintop to build a mindful workplace! How each of us de-stresses or practices mindfulness doesn’t need to fit into pre-conceived notions about the “right” way to do it.
    Explore options that interest and excite the people in your workplace. It may be meditation, but it could also be something else.
    Melissa Heisler at HuffPo suggests exploring “the things you lose track of time doing” — petting a dog, coloring a picture, walking, playing basketball. One study even showed that knitting was more effective than meditating or yoga at making participants happier. It all depends on what works best for your unique company culture and employees.
    Day 4: Practice “Monotasking”
    “Multitasking is a myth,” according to HBR. Leave the multitasking to computers — humans are simply not effective at it. In fact, one neuroscientist that HBR quotes says multitasking typically “doubles the amount of time it takes to do a task, and it usually at least doubles the number of mistakes.”
    Encourage employees to “monotask.” According to HBR, managers can do this by “helping team members with clear, one-at-a-time task prioritization for deliverables, defining milestones that don’t overlap, and generally avoiding the trap of mistaking the urgent for the important.”
    Day 5: Do Wellbeing Activities as a Team
    We already know stress can be contagious, but it turns out wellbeing is contagious, too. According to Gallup, “there is plenty of evidence that wellbeing is shared within existing formal and informal networks and that it spreads based on social ties.”
    So today, organize a wellbeing activity — whether it’s health checkups, a healthy-cooking demonstration or an exercise class — that your team can do together.
    Day 6: Spread Gratitude
    Gratitude comes naturally in a mindful workplace. It’s easier to notice our appreciation for others when we’re not continuously caught up in our own stress response. So spread some stress-busting gratitude today! Say “Thank You” more, spread random acts of kindness, write Thank You notes together or pause work for a fun celebration of your team’s successes.
    Day 7: Reward Wellbeing and Mindfulness

    Celebrate a more mindful workplace with a thank you note!

    Celebrate and support employees’ efforts at wellbeing so they know you appreciate them. A thoughtful note of thanks is always welcome. Check out gThankYou’s Spring gift Enclosure Cards for fun inspiration!

    Your employees’ good work depends on their good health and ability to handle stress, so don’t forget to reward their wellbeing and mindfulness achievements! Whether it’s a Quit Smoking initiative or group meditation or exercise participation, they deserve (and need) your appreciation to keep them motivated.
    Share small, health-minded gifts like Grocery Gift Certificates or Fruits & Vegetables Gift Certificates to thank them and encourage their efforts. Letting your staff know company leadership cares about their wellbeing is an important step toward inspiring and engaging them — and building a more mindful workplace and stress-free culture!

    Make Every Day Stress-Free in Your Workplace

    Download your FREE 2017 Day-to-Day Employee Recognition Calendar, your guide to building a successful workplace culture of positivity and gratitude.

    “In life, one has a choice to take one of two paths: to wait for some special day — or to celebrate each special day.” – Rasheed Ogunlaru, coach and author

    The gThankYou 2017 Day-to-Day Employee Celebration Calendar gives you the tools and inspiration to build a culture of appreciation every day of the year. Download yours today, absolutely free.
    Here’s to a happier workplace in 2017!
    Click to download your FREE 2017 Guide to Building an Everyday Culture of Appreciation!

    About gThankYou, LLC

    Turkey Gift CertificatesHam Gift Certificates, and Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificates by gThankYou are America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any brand (Turkey, Ham, or Turkey Or Ham), at virtually any grocery store in the U.S.
    gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime. gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and our free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo. And, nearly all orders ship same day.

    To learn more about gThankYou, watch our “About Us” Video and visit gThankYou today!

    Learn More About gThankYou – Watch Our “About Us” Video:

    gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin. Contact: Rick Kiley, Chief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-609-2234.

    Follow the Company Blog — “Celebrating Work”
    Join the Conversation @gThankYou

    “G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.

    Read Full Post
  • Employee Appreciation Gifts for Easter & Spring

    Share employee appreciate gifts this spring! Tuck a gThankYou Gift Certificate in a spring basket and delight your workplace!

    Surprise your employees with employee appreciation gifts for Easter and Spring. One idea: tuck a surprise into an Easter basket!

    Surprise your staff with employee appreciation gifts from gThankYou to celebrate Easter and the joys of spring!
    gThankYou Gift Certificates make it easy, affordable and meaningful to thank employees at the holidays or anytime.
    Available in a range of values from $5 to $30, gThankYou Gift Certificates allow recipients to choose any Brand of merchandise from virtually any chain Grocery Store in the U.S.
    Your employees will appreciate the freedom to choose the brands they like, when and where they would like to shop. gThankYou Certificates are Manufacturer Coupons that are redeemed at checkout just like other cents-off coupons.
    gThankYou Gift Certificates are also convenient for you. They’re just the right size to include in a payroll or quarterly mailing, tuck into an Easter gift basket, or share in person with a big smile, firm handshake and sincere “Thanks!”
    Plus, all gThankYou Gift Certificates come with free personalization and your choice of free, custom Enclosure Cards — including card designs to accompany Easter, Spring and Summer employee appreciation gifts!
    Order today online or by calling 855-407-9025. Nearly all gThankYou orders ship the day they are received, with delivery as soon as the next business day. Interested in large-volume discounts or worried about making a specific deadline? Call 855-407-9025.
    Read on for employee appreciation gifts of gThankYou Gift Certificates to fit every occasion this spring.

    Small Gifts, Big Gratitude

    Share Your Employee Appreciation Gifts with a Heartfelt Card of Thanks.

    gThankYou provides FREE Gift Enclosure Cards customizable with your message of thanks and even an organization logo!

    This spring, think small for employee appreciation gifts! Even the smallest of gifts matter in the workplace, according to Menlo College president Richard A. Moran.
    “Small gifts have a return far in excess of dollars,” he writes. “It’s not a holiday thing. Small surprise gifts are important all year long and can build an organization and a reputation.”
    Small surprises are what spring is all about! When you reward your staff with a surprise gift, however small, you’re helping build a culture of gratitude that grows through everyday actions.
    Gift-giving should be part of your overall engagement and appreciation strategy, of course — and small, frequent gifts are better than a once-a-year big gift.
    By sharing gifts more frequently, your team has more opportunities to express appreciation. Your gratitude is one of the most reliable, effective ways to increase motivation, engagement, retention and productivity.

    Employee Appreciation Gifts for Easter and Spring Gratitude

    Here are six gThankYou Gift Certificate options for spreading employee appreciation this spring:
    1. gThankYou! Ham Gift Certificate

    Give the traditional centerpiece to the Easter meal with a ham gift. It’s practical, meaningful and appreciated! gThankYou! Ham Gift Certificates are good for any brand and any preparation of a whole or half ham. Plus, your employees can share and enjoy their ham gift with family and friends. gThankYou even offers free downloadable cookbooks so your recipients can create the perfect holiday meal at home.

    2. gThankYou! Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificate

    Have a diverse workplace? Give the gift of choice. Recipients can choose to redeem their Turkey or Ham Gift Certificate for either a whole turkey or a whole or half ham, whichever is best for their family celebration.

    3. gThankYou! Candy Gift Certificate

    Tuck this Gift Certificate into a colorful Easter basket with a card wishing “Happy Spring!” Recipients will enjoy redeeming their gThankYou! Candy Gift Certificates for their favorite Easter candy and novelty chocolate bunnies and eggs.

    4. gThankYou! Ice Cream Gift Certificate

    Warmer weather is here, and everyone loves that summertime treat: ice cream! gThankYou! Ice Cream Gift Certificates are good for any brand of ice cream or frozen novelties. It’s the perfect low-cost way to welcome the new season and say “Thanks!”

    Delight your workplace with employee appreciation gifts that everyone will love!5. gThankYou! Fruits & Vegetables Gift Certificates

    June is Employee Wellbeing Month. Plan now to share Fruits & Vegetables Gift Certificates with your staff as part of a workplace health and wellbeing initiative. Fruits & Vegetables Gift Certificates encourage healthful choices, plus they make great rewards and raffle prizes.

    6. gThankYou! Grocery Gift Certificates

    The ultimate Gift Certificate of choice, Grocery Gift Certificates allow recipients to choose any food items (any brands, any preparation) to build the meal they want from scratch. Grocery Gift Certificates make great appreciation gifts in conjunction with healthy-eating or nutrition classes, too.

    Want to increase the impact of your employee appreciation gifts? Include a short, heartfelt note of Thanks. For tips on how to thank employees, download the gThankYou! Guide to Writing Employee Thank You Letters.

    Learn to Build a Culture of Everyday Workplace Gratitude

    Download your FREE 2019 Day-to-Day Employee Recognition Calendaryour guide to building a successful workplace culture of positivity and gratitude.

    “In life, one has a choice to take one of two paths: to wait for some special day — or to celebrate each special day.” – Rasheed Ogunlaru, coach and author

    The gThankYou 2019 Day-to-Day Employee Celebration Calendar gives you the tools and inspiration to build a culture of appreciation every day of the year. Download yours today, absolutely free.
    Here’s to building a happier workplace!


    2019 Employee Celebration Calendar - Free Download from gThankYou Employee Gifts

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  • 8 Everyday Ways to Grow Workplace Happiness

    Easy ways to grow workplace happiness

    Stop, and smile often! Even quick mindfulness exercises can increase workplace happiness. (Photo via Lorie Shaull, Flickr)

    Do you and your team need a workplace happiness boost? Time to find new ways to strengthen and grow workplace happiness!

    Today is International Day of Happiness! In celebration, make a commitment to increase the happiness levels at your company this spring.
    We spend at least a third of our lives at work, according to Lifehack, and “this can be a scary fact for some to face.”
    “Because so much of your life is spent at work, a huge deciding factor in your wellbeing is whether or not you’re happy at work,” Lifehack’s Matt Valentine writes.
    With the right conditions and practices, we all should be able to derive a sense of joy from our work, feel connected to it and believe that we’re making a positive impact on some portion of the world, however small.
    But, as Gallup research continues to reveal, this isn’t the reality for most Americans. The majority of American workers aren’t engaged in or committed to their work.
    “Gallup research shows that for a few select managers, naturally engaging their teams to be their best every day comes so instinctively they don’t even realize they’re doing it,” according to a Gallup blog post on creating everyday engagement.
    “But there is hope for the rest of us,” Gallup’s Jake Herway and Jeremy Pietrocini write. And it’s worth pursuing: “Top teams that address engagement needs in their everyday work outperform bottom teams by an average 20 percent in sales and 10 percent in customer engagement.”
    Growing everyday workplace happiness takes some effort — it means asking the right questions, empowering employees to do their best and taking time daily to engage and appreciate employees. Read on for easy tips to inspire your own workplace happiness transformation.

    The Secrets to Workplace Happiness

    A survey of 20,000 tech workers last year found an astonishing level of job satisfaction. When asked whether they feel appreciated on the job, 72 percent of respondents replied yes, and 71 percent said they feel their career allows for solid work-life balance.
    Why are these employees in tech so much happier than the average American worker? In short…

    • jobs that allow for some creativity
    • family-friendly workplaces
    • a feeling of belonging with coworkers
    • meaningful work that provides a sense of purpose

    These results can be replicated in any industry, however. And they’re built through small, everyday actions. Here are eight things you can do this week to strengthen and grow workplace happiness in your company, regardless of industry.

    8 Everyday Ways to Grow Workplace Happiness

    1. Check Your Team for Burnout
    Once in a while it’s good to stop and take an inventory of your burnout risk, according to former Help Scout strategist Gregory Ciotti. He suggests the Maslach Burnout Inventory test. You can also try this free online burnout self-test from MindTools. Use this time of self-reflection by yourself or with others to think about what’s going right, what’s not and how to move forward.

    Growing workplace happiness can be as easy as personally thanking team members for great work.

    Growing workplace happiness can be as easy as personally thanking team members for great work. Share your gratitude today!

    2. Give 5 Minutes of Your Time
    Have a cup of coffee with an employee or just spend 5 minutes chatting. A few minutes devoted to an employee can make a huge difference in their engagement.
    Amit Singh, then president of Google for Work, explained one of his early leadership lessons in a New York Times’ Corner Office Q&A last year:

    “It doesn’t always take that much to reach out and connect with people. We have a very flat structure at Google, and it’s pretty open. Anybody can come into my office and say, ‘Hey, I want to have a cup of coffee with you.’ I remember being so motivated by a leader who always felt so accessible even though he spent all of five minutes with me.”

    3. Promote Mindfulness
    Are your company leaders and supervisors practicing mindfulness? Companies like Google, General Mills, Intel, Aetna and Goldman Sachs already swear by mindfulness as a practice to help employees focus, stay creative and be happy. Find specific mindfulness tips and ideas in our blog post, “Recharge Your Workplace Gratitude Culture with Mindfulness.”
    4. Give Employees a Chance to Shine
    What happens when a manager gives an employee the chance to control an aspect of the business, no matter how small? The employee develops a sense of ownership, and that’s critical to building motivation, according to BetterCloud chief executive David Politis:

    “I’m also a big believer in giving people ownership of certain areas in the business. It’s amazing what happens when you do that. People want to make a difference, and when you give them an area of the business that they can affect, the amount of stuff that gets done, and the pride in their work is amazing.”

    5. Remote Employees? Team Up for Get-to-Know-You Time
    Keeping remote workers engaged and connected is “the eternal quest,” as Trello blogger Lydia M. puts it. One way she and other Trello employees stay connected is through a game called “Mr. Rogers.”
    Each week, two employees are randomly paired, and for 15 minutes they are tasked with hopping on a video call and getting to know one another. It’s become a popular activity for employees — not only do they get to know each other personally, they’re better able understand the company and do their jobs.
    6. Go Outside
    It’s spring! If you and your team have been stuck indoors all winter, take time for an outdoor picnic or walk. See the bushes budding, breathe in that fresh air, enjoy the warm sun.
    Even moving your morning meeting into a room with natural light could help: “Office workers with more light exposure at the office had longer sleep duration, better sleep quality, more physical activity and better quality of life compared to office workers with less light exposure in the workplace,” according to a study from Northwestern Medicine and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
    7. Share a Small Gift
    Gift-giving feels good and makes others feel good! What’s not to love? And even the smallest of gifts — a Thank You note, a $5 gift certificate, a platter of homemade cookies — stand out in the workplace, according to Menlo College president Richard A. Moran.
    “The workplace consists of very few pleasant surprises. … A pleasant and welcome surprise goes a long way,” Moran writes in his LinkedIn post, “3 Reasons Why the Smallest of Gifts Matter.”
    8. Smile and Say Thank You
    The average adult manages a smile just seven times a day — and one of those smiles might be fake. Yikes!
    Stop, take a deep breath and give yourself or your team a reason to (genuinely) smile. Pass it on — smile at an employee you normally never interact with, and thank that person for their work. These little interactions spread happiness contagiously and make anyone’s day better.

    Make Every Day Happy in Your Workplace

    Download your FREE 2017 Day-to-Day Employee Recognition Calendar, your guide to building a successful workplace culture of positivity and gratitude.

    “In life, one has a choice to take one of two paths: to wait for some special day — or to celebrate each special day.” – Rasheed Ogunlaru, coach and author

    The gThankYou 2017 Day-to-Day Employee Celebration Calendar gives you the tools and inspiration to build a culture of appreciation every day of the year. Download yours today, absolutely free.
    Here’s to a happier workplace in 2017!
    Click to download your FREE 2017 Guide to Building an Everyday Culture of Appreciation!

    About gThankYou, LLC

    Turkey Gift CertificatesHam Gift Certificates, and Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificates by gThankYou are America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any brand (Turkey, Ham, or Turkey Or Ham), at virtually any grocery store in the U.S.
    gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime. gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and our free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo. And, nearly all orders ship same day.

    To learn more about gThankYou, watch our “About Us” Video and visit gThankYou today!

    Learn More About gThankYou – Watch Our “About Us” Video:

    gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin. Contact: Rick Kiley, Chief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-609-2234.

    Follow the Company Blog — “Celebrating Work”
    Join the Conversation @gThankYou

    “G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.

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  • Building Employee Happiness, the Mister Rogers Way

    Building employee happiness the Mister Rodgers Way

    Fred Rogers delighted children for decades on television, but we can still learn from him as adults about workplace leadership and building employee happiness. (KUHT, Wikimedia Commons)

    Fred Rogers delighted children for decades on television, but even as adults we can learn and be inspired by his legacy for better workplace leadership and building employee happiness.
    Employee happiness is on our minds these days because International Day of Happiness is this Monday, March 20.
    It’s also Mister Rogers Day — or “Sweater Day,” an effort to get people everywhere to wear Rogers’ trademark cardigan in honor of the beloved children’s entertainer and his show, Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood. Rogers would have turned 89 this March 20.
    Generations of children grew up watching Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood from 1963 to 2001.
    “He spoke to children like grown-ups, and helped them tackle topics such as anger, trust, honesty, courage and sadness,” Jonathan Merritt wrote in a posthumous profile of Rogers in The Atlantic.
    Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood pushed beyond surface-level entertainment and instilled children with a sense of joy, peace and kindness. Researchers who compared viewers of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood with viewers of Sesame Street even found that Fred’s fans developed a greater level of patience.”

    Mister Rogers, Won’t You Be My Boss?

    Rogers was also, unsurprisingly, a thoughtful boss.

    Every summer, he rented out an amusement park near his hometown of Latrobe, Pa., for the children of his employees to enjoy.
    Rogers’ “deep and simple lessons may have been packaged for children, but they are applicable at any age,” Maura Jutkis wrote for the Washington Post in 2012. He had a “magical effect on adults,” too. She quotes a 1998 Esquire profile of Mister Rogers:

    “The moment Mister Rogers got out of the car, people wouldn’t stay away from him, they respected him so much … ‘Oh, Mister Rogers, thank you for my childhood.’ ‘Oh, Mister Rogers, you’re the father I never had.’ ‘Oh, Mister Rogers, would you please just hug me?'”

    Many of the employees on his show stayed with him for decades, according to the New York Times.
    At one point in the 1990s, he thought of retiring, “but he pressed on, partly because he felt responsible for the staff members who inhabited the real ‘Neighborhood,’ which had the simple warmth and loyal relationships of the make-believe version.”
    He showed personal interest in his employees and fostered a meaningful workplace culture.
    One employee of 33 years “recalled moments when her boss shared conversations about her ailing cat and then offered to join her when it was euthanized.”

    Rogers and his team thought of themselves as sort of a church congregation with a “sense of being involved in something bigger,” William Barker, voice of the puppet Dr. William Duck Platypus, told the Times.

    Building Employee Happiness, the Mister Rogers Way

    Inspired by Fast Company’s “5 Marketing Lessons from Mr. Rogers” and others, here are five ways to model Rogers in workplace leadership to build employee happiness:

    1. Focus on Relationships, Not Flashy Perks

    Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood was decidedly low-tech and not flashy, yet Rogers managed to inspire a large, loyal following of young viewers. He did this by talking to his viewers personably, asking questions and building a “relationship” with each and every one.

    Big, expensive employee benefits are nice, but a personal connection will always be more memorable in the long run. Ultimately, you’ll need to find a balance: recognize employee excellence thoughtfully and generously, but never forget to personally say “Thank You” or seize the opportunity to get to know an employee one-on-one. These small connections will stay with employees the longest and build lasting employee happiness.

    2. Let Employees Know How Their Work Matters

    Not all of us can work behind the scenes on a beloved children’s program, but that doesn’t mean the work your company does can’t be just as meaningful.

    Rogers’ employees stayed with his show for decades because he put a high value on meaningful workplace culture. He did this by frequently communicating how and why the work mattered. And according to Harvard Business Review, meaningful work should be every CEO’s top priority.

    3. Inspire, Don’t Rule

    “There’s a world of difference between insisting on someone doing something and establishing an atmosphere in which that person can grow into wanting to do it.”

    This quote from Rogers inspired Marc Galvagno, a former executive at the transportation company Air Van Lines, Inc.

    In a 2005 Puget Sound Business Chronicle profile, Galvagno said he kept a Mister Rogers thought-of-the-day calendar on his desk and let Rogers’ words inspire his management style.

    “This man had true perspective. He was so dang genuine,” Galvagno said.

    4. Listen, and Be Responsive

    There are countless stories of how responsive Rogers was to his viewers, often responding at length to fan mail and paying close attention to the concerns viewers might share. This has the same effect on six-year-olds as it does on 36-year-olds: people who feel heard and valued will put more effort into the relationship (and into the work).

    5. Be Authentic

    Rogers was a convincing public speaker, able to secure millions of dollars in funding for public television and children’s education. He did it, according to marketing expert Mitch Joel, through storytelling and authenticity.
    Storytelling is one way to discover authenticity as a leader. By finding and telling the story of your company and the work you do, you’ll naturally become more authentic — and that’s a quality employees will immediately respond to.
    “Storytelling is more than an essential set of tools to get things done: it’s a way for leaders — wherever they may sit — to embody the change they seek. … Storytelling helps us make sense of organizations,” according to Forbes’ “Why Leadership Storytelling Is Important.”

    Next Week: Don’t Miss International Day of Happiness!

    Monday, March 20 — in addition to Fred Rogers’ birthday — is International Day of Happiness! Renew your commitment to happier employees with a workplace celebration. We’ll be posting ideas and inspiration in the coming days.
    Want to build a culture of workplace happiness every day of the year?
    Download your FREE 2017 Day-to-Day Employee Recognition Calendar, your guide to building a successful workplace culture of positivity and gratitude.

    “In life, one has a choice to take one of two paths: to wait for some special day — or to celebrate each special day.” – Rasheed Ogunlaru, coach and author

    gThankYou’s 2017 Day-to-Day Employee Celebration Calendar gives you the tools and inspiration to build a culture of appreciation every day of the year. Download yours today, absolutely free.
    Here’s to a happier employees and a happier workplace in 2017!
    Click to download your FREE 2017 Guide to Building an Everyday Culture of Appreciation!

    About gThankYou, LLC

    Turkey Gift CertificatesHam Gift Certificates, and Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificates by gThankYou are America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any brand (Turkey, Ham, or Turkey Or Ham), at virtually any grocery store in the U.S.
    gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime. gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and our free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo. And, nearly all orders ship same day.

    To learn more about gThankYou, watch our “About Us” Video and visit gThankYou today!

    Learn More About gThankYou – Watch Our “About Us” Video:

    gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin. Contact: Rick Kiley, Chief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-609-2234.

    Follow the Company Blog — “Celebrating Work”
    Join the Conversation @gThankYou

    “G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.

    Read Full Post
  • Why Family-Friendly Workplaces Have Happier Employees

    Wegmans shows how to inspire happier employees

    Wegmans employees say they feel like family and that’s because they are treated like family. Their motto: “Do What You Love.” Bravo, Wegmans!

    If you’re looking for the secret to happier employees, a reliable place to look first is Fortune’s 100 Best Companies to Work For.
    Fortune recently published its 2017 list, with familiar names like Google, Salesforce and Quicken Loans in the Top 10.
    But coming in at #2 is a company most Americans won’t recognize — unless they live in a handful of northeastern states, or they pay attention to Fortune’s annual “Best Companies” list.
    Wegmans is a small grocery-store chain with locations in New York, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Jersey and Virginia. This is Wegmans’ 20th year on Fortune’s list.
    How does Wegmans manage to have happier employees in an industry known for low wages and high turnover? The secret may be in the company’s family-friendly employee recognition practices, according to an article in Quartz.
    Wegmans employees continually praise the company’s family-like work environment on employer-review sites like Glassdoor.
    It’s good for business.
    “All that employee love is paying off,” Quartz’s Oliver Staley writes. “Wegmans is growing rapidly, expanding from its northeast base to add stores in Virginia (there are now 92 stores in six states), and revenues reportedly climbed to $7.9 billion in 2015 from $6.2 billion in 2011.”
    Across the board, family-friendly workplaces are winning at engagement, with happier and more productive employees and a good reputation in the community. Forbes contributor Freek Vermeulen calls it “happiness for free” — family-friendly practices can be costly, but they essentially pay for themselves.
    At a time when the majority of Americans are “open” to leaving their current jobs, we should all be following the lead of family-friendly workplaces for happier employees and better retention. Well done, Wegmans! (more…)

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  • Pi Day in the Workplace? Pass the Pie!

     Pi Day in the Workplace

    Pi Day is March 14, or 3.14 — and backwards that spells PIE — so get ready to celebrate Pi Day in the workplace this week. (Photo by Michael Moses, via Koka Sexton, Flickr)

    Celebrating National Pi Day in the workplace is the perfect way to engage employees, have fun together and, of course, eat tasty slices of pie. Get ready: it’s tomorrow, March 14!
    National Pi Day — not to be confused with National Pie Day, our other favorite excuse to enjoy pie — is the holiday made up by math geeks to celebrate the irrational number that describes the ratio of a circle’s diameter to its circumference.
    That number is 3.14, or March 14. And 3.14 backwards is … you guessed it, PIE.
    “Pi Day is a holiday for math (and pie) enthusiasts to celebrate their love of numbers,” according to PBS.
    There are contests to see who can recite the most digits of pi by heart, popular songs remade with pi lyrics, and lots and lots and lots of pies, from chicken pot pie to key lime pie.
    NASA even put together a “Pi in the Sky” infographic to explain to the rest of us how scientists use pi in space.

    Pi Day in the Workplace: A Celebration of Pie and Teamwork

    (more…)

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  • Ideas on International Day of Awesomeness

    Happy International Day of Awesomeness! Yes, this is a real (unofficial) holiday — and it’s awesome to celebrate in the workplace.
    A couple of coworkers started International Day of Awesomeness back in 2007. It was as easy as registering the domain “dayofawesomeness.com” and putting the idea out into the world.
    Held every year on March 10, International Day of Awesomeness has a simple premise: be awesome and encourage others to be awesome.
    Why? “Because everyone needs an excuse to be awesome.” Can’t argue with that!
    How we celebrate International Day of Awesomeness is open to creativity. The holiday’s founders suggest “feats of awesomeness.”
    Be inspired to celebrate the day with your team. And don’t forget to share your company’s International Day of Awesomeness activities on social media with the hashtags #idoa or #dayofawesomeness.

    8 Ways to Celebrate International Day of Awesomeness At Work

    Building an awesome workplace culture is an investment. It takes time, resources and full support from company leadership.
    Of course, we all want a better culture today. A recent headline from the satirical newspaper The Onion takes a humorous spin on this unrealistic expectation: “Boss Wants Friendly, Relaxed Company Culture In Place By Friday.”
    By Friday would be great, of course — but the reality is, you and your team have to be in it for the long haul.
    However, there are specific and effective things you can do right now that really will make your company culture just a bit more awesome. Best part is, you’ll see results right away.
    So start today, in honor of International Day of Awesomeness! Here are eight ideas of what your HR team and your employees can do together to celebrate:
    (more…)

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  • Employee Appreciation Day: How 2 Companies Make It Last

    Celebrate employee appreciation day in your workplace!

    How will you make your Employee Appreciation Day celebration last all year? (Photo via ufv, Flickr)

    Employee Appreciation Day is always the first Friday of March. It’s the perfect time to pause, reflect and show gratitude to your staff.
    Now, what about the other 364 days of the year?
    Not every day’s a party, but a day shouldn’t go by when your team doesn’t feel appreciated in some way.
    A strong, effective program for employee appreciation includes an Employee Appreciation Day celebration and lasts all year.

    Why Employee Appreciation Deserves More Than One Day

    The link between employee appreciation and its impact on engagement and productivity is well-documented.
    More than 35 percent of employees in a recent poll consider lack of recognition the biggest block to their productivity, according to Forbes’ contributor Karen Higginbottom.
    Appreciation isn’t just what employees say they want. Controlled studies show appreciation has a direct effect on employee behavior.
    For example, a study conducted by researchers at the Wharton School showed that university employees who heard a message of gratitude were more motivated and productive. Higginbottom explains:

    Researchers … divided university fund-raisers into two groups. One group made phone calls to solicit alumni donations in the same way they always had. The second group assigned to work on a different day received a pep talk from the director of annual giving, who told the fund-raisers she was grateful for their efforts. During the following week, the university employees who heard her message of gratitude made 50% more fund-raising calls than those who did not.”

    Notably, when a recent survey asked employees to describe what makes them happy at work, they named pride, fairness, respect and feeling appreciated. These are the kind of feelings that take ongoing effort to develop — in other words, you can’t hand out holiday bonuses at Christmas and expect employees to still feel the glow of appreciation six months later without additional effort.
    Ideally, your employee appreciation plan includes special celebrations as well as ongoing activities to engage and thank staff.
    The good news is that employee appreciation done right can work well even on a budget. Sharing gratitude is often as simple as a heartfelt “Thank You.”
    Read on for case studies in how two companies excel at making Employee Appreciation Day every day.
     

    Mini-Case Study #1: Aveda Institute (Des Moines, IA)

    “We treat them how we want to be treated, and it just works,” Jana Van Polen, co-owner of Aveda Institute Des Moines, tells the Des Moines Register.  “We create this culture that allows employees to find their true worth and find potential they never knew they had.”
    In addition to benefits like paid volunteer time and a biennial wellness-and-development summit, the Aveda Institute throws a formal staff-appreciation party every January.
    The party is costly for the company, “but it’s such a morale booster that we can’t live without it,” co-owner (and Jana’s husband) Doug Van Polen says.
    Significantly, the company reinforces the theme of employee appreciation so it “carries through the rest of the year,” too.
    April King, Aveda’s director, attributes the company’s motivated culture to good communication and daily demonstrations of gratitude.
    “Daily, we shout out what we love, and we respect each other enough to have open communication. When you can have tough subject conversations in a light manner and work together to accomplish something, it’s meaningful,” she says.

    Mini-Case Study #2: Rivers Casino (Pittsburgh, PA)

    Rivers Casino has been named one of Pittsburgh’s top workplaces two years in a row and was also voted best for making employees feel genuinely appreciated, according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
    How does the casino do it?
    It’s no easy task: the casino employs 1,700 and is open round-the-clock. So, showing appreciation is “not always monetary,” general manager Craig Clark says. “It’s a work-life balance.”
    One of the difficulties in managing the casino is being open 24/​7. Employees have to work nights, holidays and weekends. So, extra recognition at the holidays is key.
    “Recognizing the stress that comes with working during the holiday season, the casino offers employees traditional hams and turkeys to take home for their families,” the Post-Gazette’s Mike Danielewski reports.
    It doesn’t stop there. Year-round appreciation efforts include:

    • employee raffles
    • rewards for attendance and good work
    • a trained masseuse offering free massages
    • tuition reimbursement

    Listening is also a big part of the engagement strategy. Casino management encourages employee feedback through discussions and team-member surveys.
    Take it from one of the employees, who noted in a survey response: “The leadership team stays involved with the team members and shows genuine interest in the engagement of everyone, keeping them informed and listening to their concerns.”

    Ready to Start Recognizing Employees Year-Round?

    Download your FREE 2017 Day-to-Day Employee Recognition Calendar, your guide to building a successful workplace culture of positivity and gratitude.

    “In life, one has a choice to take one of two paths: to wait for some special day — or to celebrate each special day.” – Rasheed Ogunlaru, coach and author

    The gThankYou 2017 Day-to-Day Employee Celebration Calendar gives you the tools and inspiration to build a culture of appreciation every day of the year. Download yours today, absolutely free.
    Here’s to a happier workplace in 2017!
    Click to download your FREE 2017 Guide to Building an Everyday Culture of Appreciation!

    About gThankYou, LLC

    Turkey Gift CertificatesHam Gift Certificates, and Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificates by gThankYou are America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any brand (Turkey, Ham, or Turkey Or Ham), at virtually any grocery store in the U.S.
    gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime. gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and our free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo. And, nearly all orders ship same day.

    To learn more about gThankYou, watch our “About Us” Video and visit gThankYou today!

    Learn More About gThankYou – Watch Our “About Us” Video:

    gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin. Contact: Rick Kiley, Chief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-609-2234.

    Follow the Company Blog — “Celebrating Work”
    Join the Conversation @gThankYou
    Watch our gThankYou! YouTube Video — “Learn More About Us”

    “G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.

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  • Grow Workplace Positivity with a Compliment

    It's easy to build workplace positivity! Take advantage of World Compliment Day and Employee Appreciation Day to share your sincere thanks.

    It takes just a few minutes a day to build workplace positivity with compliments. Start today — World Compliment Day!

    Building Workplace Positivity

    Workplace positivity grows through appreciation and, specifically, great compliments. Start practicing today, World Compliment Day, to get ready for Employee Appreciation Day later this week.
    Held annually on March 1, World Compliment Day has its origins in the Netherlands.
    World Compliment Day is not commercially oriented, “so everyone can afford to participate,” according to a history at WorldComplimentDay.info. It “simply addresses the basic human need for recognition and appreciation. … And therein lies its power.”
    Hans Poortvliet, a Dutch recognition professional and the driving force behind the annual event in the Netherlands, points out that compliments cost nothing but have a huge impact.
    “Nothing stimulates more, gives more energy, makes people happier and, as far as business is concerned, increases productivity and commitment faster than sincere appreciation,” Poortvliet says. Ultimately, if every person pays a compliment to at least three people, “we will definitely create the Most Positive Day in the World!”
    (more…)

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  • 3 Mini-Case Studies in Employee Appreciation

    Share your heartfelt thanks this Employee Appreciation Day!

    Celebrate genuine workplace gratitude and teamwork for Employee Appreciation Day on March 3. (Photo via AFGE, Flickr)

    Employee Appreciation Day is this Friday, March 3. To get ready, we combed the news for case studies in effective, original employee appreciation to inspire your efforts.
    What makes a good employee appreciation program?
    Hppy’s infographic Top 10 Best Workplace Incentives has three criteria for worthwhile employee appreciation.
    First, it reduces turnover. Watching coworkers quit in frustration is demoralizing. It feeds gossip and unhappiness among staff and slows down productivity.
    Unappreciated, stressed-out employees will eventually seek happiness elsewhere, “joining the 2.7 million people who quit their jobs each month,” according to Hppy. “And as any HR professional knows, turnover is the bane of corporate existence. It takes at least 20 percent of a person’s salary to replace them — not to mention the time and energy you’ll spend conducting interviews and reading applications.”
    Second, it saves money — but maybe not immediately: “Many companies hesitate to start incentives programs because of the costs it will incur. But these costs are relatively small compared to the money you’ll save in the long run.”
    Third, it generates good. Ultimately, employee appreciation is “about creating a better workplace — and a better world,” according to Hppy. “Take Facebook: they offer moms and dads four months of paid time off to spend with their new baby, plus pay adoption fees. By supporting parents, Facebook contributes to a more stable, family-oriented society.”
    (more…)

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  • Time to Reinvent Employee Recognition

    Employee recognition "wake up" call from Gallup

    Gallup’s latest in-depth report is a “call to action” for a more engaged leadership providing ongoing, effective employee recognition. (Photo via COD Newsroom, Flickr)

    Grab your coffee, Gallup is serving business leaders a wake-up call.
    Employee recognition needs to be a top priority, according to Gallup’s massive State of the American Workplace.
    Experts at Gallup are calling the report a “call to action” for companies, starting with a complete overhaul of employee recognition and engagement strategy.
    The old ways of managing employees just aren’t working, and change isn’t optional.
    Released last week, the 214-page report is Gallup’s first comprehensive survey of the U.S. workplace in four years. Gallup bases its research on data collected from more than 195,600 U.S. employees, 31 million respondents through Gallup’s Q12 Client Database, and insights from Fortune 1000 companies.
    It’s a lot of data to unpack — but it’s incredibly useful. The report gives HR leaders and managers an in-depth look at how they’re doing across the board. It’s not a rosy picture.
    If you’ve been following Gallup’s excellent month-to-month workplace research, some of the report’s data won’t be surprising. Engagement numbers are still dismally low — only 33 percent of American workers are engaged at their jobs, and productivity continues to decline. More than half are looking for work elsewhere.
    But the report also provides new data and insights into why employees aren’t more engaged or productive. Again and again, the data points to a need for more engaged leadership and much better employee recognition.
    The once-a-year model of employee recognition just doesn’t cut it anymore.
    (more…)

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  • 9 Free Resources to Inspire Workplace Kindness

    Want to inspire wworkplace kindness? Read on for free resources to help.

    First step toward a kinder culture? Smile! And take advantage of the many free resources to help your organization build workplace kindness. (Photo via Kamil Porembiński, Flickr)

    Are you inspired by Random Acts of Kindness Week to build workplace kindness in your organization? Great! We can help with free resources to inspire workplace kindness – everyday!
    Now’s the time to start. Only one in four employees feel valued at work, a 16 percent drop from last year, according to the TINYPulse Employee Engagement Report.
    “Managers are falling behind in their recognition efforts,” the study concludes.
    Worse, only 24 percent of employees feel connected to their peers — “11 percent lower than last year, and this gap is causing cross-functional frictions.”
    Where are the positive trends? Among the growing number of companies that 1) commit to improving culture, and 2) prioritize frequent feedback.
    “The top factors related to employee happiness turn out to be the intangible ones such as interpersonal relationships, culture and work environment,” TINYPulse researchers write. “Benefits, work-life balance and flexible schedules, surprisingly, don’t have a strong impact on employee happiness.”
    So building a culture of workplace kindness is no longer the “nice thing to do” — it’s a smart, strategic move backed by research as a driver of employee performance, motivation and retention. But it can be hard to know where to start — or, if your company is already working on an engagement strategy, how to move forward and constantly improve.
    Good news: from research analysis to podcasts, there are tons of free resources out there to inspire you. Read on for a list to help you and your team create a unique strategy for a better culture of workplace kindness in your organization — this #RAKweek and beyond!

    Resources to Inspire Workplace Kindness

    1. Mindfulness podcasts
    Mindfulness leads to kind actions. Need a mental recharge? Limeade recently released its 2017 recommendations for motivational and mindfulness podcasts — “Use your next lunch break to re-energize and get your focus flowing.” Download Limeade’s free list today, and happy listening!
    2. ‘Coaching Employees for High Performance’ eBook
    One practical, concrete way to demonstrate kindness to employees is to help them develop their skills and career. Quantum Workplace’s “Coaching Employees for High Performance” eBook has all the details to get you started, including:

    • Research behind the benefits of employee coaching
    • The HR handbook for implementing coaching as a form of learning and development
    • An essential toolbox for effective manager and peer coaching
    • 4 keys to creating a culture of coaching

    3. Gaping Void daily email
    Gaping Void‘s eye-catching illustrations, accompanied by simple but powerful text — like this — are a regular inspiration for workplace kindness. Subscribe or browse past emails here.
    4. Krista Tippett’s TEDTalk “Reconnecting with Compassion”
    You may know Krista Tippett’s voice from the national public radio program On Being. Back in 2010, she recorded a great TEDTalk on compassion that deconstructs the meaning of the word through several moving stories. She also proposes a new, more attainable definition for the word. Watch her talk (or read a transcript) here.
    5. Intro to Second Wave Positive Psychology
    You’re probably familiar with positive psychology and the benefits of positive thinking in the workplace. It’s been nearly two decades since Martin Seligman founded the field of positive psychology. Now the field is undergoing a “second wave” — and it has implications for employee engagement, workplace relations and culture-building. Read Tim Lomas’ “Intro to Second Wave Positive Psychology” in Psychology Today.
    6. Your FREE Employee Recognition Calendar!

    “In life, one has a choice to take one of two paths: to wait for some special day — or to celebrate each special day.” – Rasheed Ogunlaru, coach and author

    Kindness is easy to share and does not need to cost anything. We believe the foundation of any great workplace is daily appreciation. That’s why we offer a free annual day-to-day Calendar for Celebrating Employees.
    Download your copy now and share with colleagues. We hope it inspires you to spread workplace kindness everyday!!


    2019 Employee Celebration Calendar - Free Download from gThankYou Employee Gifts

     
    Here’s to a happier, kinder workplace! Thanks @RAKFoundation for sharing your kindness.

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  • To Build Workplace Kindness, Try Empathy

    workplace kindness all starts with empathy

    Kindness is a powerful way to break up workplace stress, and it starts with applied empathy. (Image via Sean MacEntee, Flickr)

    Random Acts of Kindness Week is here! In honor of the importance of kindness, let’s build more workplace kindness together this week.
    Kindness is a powerful way to build engagement, encourage well-being and break up workplace stress.
    Celebrating kindness reminds us to incorporate it more into all aspects of our everyday life — with family, friends and our communities. Ever tried sharing unexpected kindness? It’s contagious and creates a ripple effect of shared goodwill and feelings of appreciation.
    But what exactly causes people to act in kind ways? It starts with empathy. And the effects of a more empathic workplace culture go beyond kindness and less stress.
    “In the workplace, empathy is often portrayed as a requisite tool for emotionally intelligent leaders. But perhaps more notable is the strong effect on performance,” Forbes columnist Jessica Amortegui writes in her post, “Are You Using Apple’s Secret Skill at Work?”
    Read on to find out what empathy is exactly, why it’s needed, and how one company is systematically and methodically using “applied empathy” to beat workplace stress and create a healthier, happier culture.
    (more…)

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  • Get Ready! Random Acts of Kindness Week 2017 is Feb. 12-18

    How will your organization celebrate random acts of kindness week?Random Acts of Kindness Week starts in just a few days! Are you ready?
    We love RAK Week as an opportunity for employee engagement: it’s fun, it’s positive and it connects people in a genuine, memorable way. Celebrate it in the workplace and also with the greater community using the #RAKWeek2017 hashtag on social media.
    Workplace kindness is something we all could use a little more of — incivility at work is “rampant” and on the rise, according to Christine Porath.
    Porath is associate professor of management at Georgetown University and author of the new book, “Mastering Civility: A Manifesto for the Workplace.”
    Lack of kindness has real psychological and bottom-line costs in the workplace, according to Porath’s research. It’s also commonplace. In 2011 half of surveyed employees said they were treated rudely at least once a week, up from a quarter in 1998.
    Porath’s findings are the result of 14 years of research polling thousands of workers at every level in a wide variety of industries about how they’re treated on the job. It’s eye-opening stuff.
    And it’s not all doom and gloom: Porath is also in a unique position to offer perspective on how to make our workplaces kinder. In anticipation of Random Acts of Kindness Week, let’s take a closer look at Porath’s work and the science behind building workplace kindness.
    (more…)

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  • Gratitude: The Secret Ingredient to Help Your Employer Brand Stand Out

    Does your employer brand communicate employee appreciation?

    Does your employer brand send a strong message of workplace gratitude? (Photo via thedailyenglishshow.com, Flickr)

    Want to attract top candidates who’ll stay loyal to your company through thick and thin? You need a dynamic employer brand that immediately stands out to potential employees — the kind of employer brand that not only attracts the right people for the job but gets them excited and keeps them around longer.
    Talent sourcing is an increasingly complex undertaking due to advances in technology and access to big data, as recent Bersin by Deloitte research shows.
    But there’s one aspect of attracting great employees that will never go out of style: great communication.
    “Today’s companies must market their brand not just to consumers but to potential hires, too,” according to TalentCulture.
    The magic ingredient in any employer brand communication plan? Gratitude. Potential employees need to know how much your company values and appreciates its workers.
    “Recruiting today needs to move from the ‘transactional’ to the ‘creative,’ and that means employers must ‘rethink how they can stand out to draw talent,'” according to a HR Dive brief on the Tech.Co article, “Storytelling Needs to Take Center Stage in Recruiting.”
    Storytelling is an effective, budget-friendly way make your employer brand memorable. Be sure you’re using it to communicate how much your company values workplace gratitude.

    How Recruitment Is Changing to Meet New Demands

    “Today’s recruiting is not your mother or father’s recruiting. The emergence of global markets, social media and analytic tools is transforming the business of hiring and retaining employees,” writes Meghan M. Biro in her TalentCulture article “The Old Ways of Working Are Not Working.”
    “Companies need to out-smart, out-innovate and out-hustle the competition if they want to have the inside track when it comes to attracting the highest quality candidates,” Biro writes.
    Hiring a new employee “is only the beginning of an extended process,” according to Biro. Companies need to live up to their employer brand to maintain a motivated workforce. That means developing:

    • a connected and collaborative workplace environment
    • open lines of communication
    • team-building tools
    • frequent, positive, useful feedback

    Next, these elements need to be communicated back out to potential hires. In this way, recruitment is a continuous process. The work of building an employer brand is never done. And it’s grounded in vibrant internal and external communication where “Thank You” and other words of appreciation are shared often.

    Love Your Employees? Let the World Know!

    Industries like technology and media were early adapters to employer brand storytelling. Now companies in a broad range of industries are discovering its power, particularly via social media.
    “Companies in hospitality, scientific research and beauty are all now turning to storytelling to help candidates get a more intimate view of working in their organization,” Amplify Talent founder Lars Schmidt writes for Tech.Co.
    Across all industries, social media recruitment has a come along way. It used to be “a sea of the same stock photos, boilerplate text and career sites with slogans like, ‘A world of opportunity,'” Schmidt writes.
    Of course, stock photos and generic slogans don’t let potential employees know what it’s really like to work for your company. And they don’t communicate authentic gratitude.
    Oracle is one company Schmidt points to for an example of an employer brand turnaround. He quotes Celinda Appleby, Oracle’s Head of Global Employer Brand:

    “When I joined Oracle, almost two years ago all of our content for talent attraction featured stock photography or graphics of robots. Our employees couldn’t identify with the personas we created. Enter a shift towards storytelling. We tapped into our employees and asked them what they loved about working at Oracle.
    We learned the common thread was the ability to pursue outside passions, as we foster a flexible, inclusive environment. These stories started out as quotes and over the past year have grown to videos. We learned by using their voices and images; they felt rewarded and acknowledged. Our external audiences started to see the passion come to life, as our #lifeatOracle hashtag grew organically. Now it reaches over 500 million people monthly.”

    What’s the common thread in this turnaround? Gratitude. It goes both ways. Oracle empowers employees to share their gratitude for the company and lets them — in their own words — express how they feel rewarded and acknowledged by the company.
    “Storytelling allows companies to humanize their culture,” Schmidt writes.

    What's Your Employer Brand?

    How does your company say Thank You? Wisconsin based Culver’s Restaurant chain proudly supports local family farmers.

    The Cost of Gratitude: $0

    The success of a gratitude-rich employer brand isn’t driven by how much you spend on developing it. That makes it “a great equalizer for smaller companies in competitive markets,” according to Schmidt.
    For example, San Francisco-based recruiting tech platform Lever used storytelling to get an edge in a highly competitive hiring environment.
    The company invested in storytelling workshops and training for employees and encouraged employees to share their work experience on blogs and social media.
    The results were dramatic, a company analysis found. Employees started blogging more and self-identifying as brand advocates, and 80 percent rewrote their LinkedIn profiles “to support internal narratives and added personalization so prospects researching them could get to know them beyond their resumes.” In addition, gender diversity — a challenge in the tech sector — increased directly because of blog posts from female staff members.
    Investment in building a gratitude-rich culture and employer brand has big payoffs — and the cost of investment often costs nothing beyond saying “Thank You” and expressing appreciation for employee excellence.

    Download Your FREE 2017 Employee Recognition Calendar

    “In life, one has a choice to take one of two paths: to wait for some special day — or to celebrate each special day.” – Rasheed Ogunlaru, coach and author

    Download the gThankYou 2017 Day-to-Day Employee Celebration Calendar for resources and advice to help your organization thrive this year. Our calendar guide gives you the tools and inspiration to build a culture of appreciation every day of the year. Download yours today, absolutely free!
    Here’s to a happier workplace in 2017!
    Click to download your FREE 2017 Guide to Building an Everyday Culture of Appreciation!

    About gThankYou, LLC

    Turkey Gift CertificatesHam Gift Certificates, and Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificates by gThankYou are America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any brand (Turkey, Ham, or Turkey Or Ham), at virtually any grocery store in the U.S.
    gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime. gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and our free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo. And, nearly all orders ship same day.

    To learn more about gThankYou, watch our “About Us” Video and visit gThankYou today!

    Learn More About gThankYou – Watch Our “About Us” Video:

    gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin. Contact: Rick Kiley, Chief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-609-2234.

    Follow the Company Blog — “Celebrating Work”
    Join the Conversation @gThankYou

    “G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.

    Read Full Post
  • How to Have a Productive Super Bowl Monday in the Workplace

    Super bowl Monday in the workplace doesn't need to be unproductive

    Plan now to help employees re-engage and be productive this Super Bowl Monday. Everyone benefits!

    You and your team can survive Super Bowl Monday in the workplace — thrive even!
    Turn this notoriously unproductive day around with the right leadership and employee engagement. Like other holidays (official or unofficial), Super Bowl Monday is a great chance to let your employees know you care about them and appreciate their work.
    Super Bowl LI in Houston on Sunday is bound to be the talk at work on Monday, from the winning plays to the advertising hits and flops and Lady Gaga’s half-time show.
    A January 2016 survey by the Workforce Institute at Kronos forecast that about 16.5 million employed U.S. adults, or one in 10 workers, would skip work the day after last year’s Super Bowl.
    An additional estimated 7.5 million employees “may show up late,” researchers found.
    That’s not a lot of enthusiasm to work with — and if you don’t manage your team right, you could end up with a half-full workplace of distracted employees. According to one analysis, employers typically lose $820 million to $850 million in lost productivity the day after the game. Stunning numbers, but true.
    Wake everyone up from their nacho dip hangover this Super Bowl Monday! It’s possible to be productive at work and celebrate the big game.

    Yes, Productivity Is Possible on Super Bowl Monday! Here’s How.

    Now's the time to plan for Super Bowl Monday in the workplace!

    Be ready for it: the 51st Super Bowl in Houston on Sunday is bound to be the talk of Super Bowl Monday in the workplace. (Image via NFL/Wikipedia fair use)

    Kraft Heinz generated a lot of buzz this week with the announcement that salaried office employees will get Super Bowl Monday off.
    “The company known for Kraft Mac & Cheese and Heinz Ketchup also has launched an online petition to make that day a national holiday called “Smunday,” a day of rest after the gluttonous nacho-inhaling, beer-swilling American pastime that is the Super Bowl,” reports the Chicago Tribune.
    “Smunday” — as in Sunday + Monday + Fun. It’s a cute name and idea, and the Kraft Heinz petition to make it a national holiday already has more than 50,000 supporters.
    But there’s one catch. The day off doesn’t apply to Kraft Heinz’s factory workers. Hmmm.
    As appealing as “Smunday” is, skipping work Super Bowl Monday isn’t an option for many Americans, particularly those in transportation, production, service and hospitality. It’s important to engage and take care of these vital workers, too.
    So if you’ve got employees scheduled to work Monday, what can you do to prevent distraction and keep up productivity?
    1. Build Anticipation
    First, let employees know now that Super Bowl Monday in the workplace will be a special day for them. Announce special plans in advance. Those thinking of taking the day off or calling in sick will have an incentive to attend.
    2. Plan a Social Hour with Recovery Food

    Next, plan a simple social gathering for the start of the workday. Bring in extra-strong coffee, milk, bagels and bananas. Now’s not the time for sugary doughnuts. Your employees need long-lasting energy to focus all day! Consider offering healthy snacks in break-rooms — prepackaged fruit smoothies, small boxes of raisins or trail mix, or fruit and nut bars.
    3. A Little Distraction is OK
    Instead of fighting everyone’s distraction, embrace it! Give everyone on your team time to socialize together and discuss the game. Let employees celebrate (or commiserate) together to get it out of their systems before getting down to work.
    4. Take Advantage of Social Engagement
    Your employees will most certainly be engaged on Super Bowl Monday — at least with each other. Take advantage of this boosted morale and social engagement to build teamwork. This may be a good day to schedule more creative or social tasks, like a brainstorming meeting. Up the ante with small gifts to award small wins, like a great idea, a task completed in record-breaking time, kudos from a customer, etc.
    5. Have fun!
    Remember, having fun together isn’t wasted time! Positive teams that work well together are more productive in the long run, according Harvard Business Review.

    Download Your FREE 2017 Employee Recognition Calendar

    “In life, one has a choice to take one of two paths: to wait for some special day — or to celebrate each special day.” – Rasheed Ogunlaru, coach and author

    Download the gThankYou 2017 Day-to-Day Employee Celebration Calendar for resources and advice to help your organization thrive this year. Our calendar guide gives you the tools and inspiration to build a culture of appreciation every day of the year. Download yours today, absolutely free!
    Here’s to a happier workplace in 2017!
    Click to download your FREE 2017 Guide to Building an Everyday Culture of Appreciation!

    About gThankYou, LLC

    Turkey Gift CertificatesHam Gift Certificates, and Turkey Or Ham Gift Certificates by gThankYou are America’s favorite employee gifts and can be redeemed for any brand (Turkey, Ham, or Turkey Or Ham), at virtually any grocery store in the U.S.
    gThankYou, LLC provides company leaders with a variety of easy, meaningful and affordable ways to recognize and reward employees, holiday time or anytime. gThankYou! Certificates of Gratitude and our free Enclosure Cards are personalizable including incorporating your company logo. And, nearly all orders ship same day.

    To learn more about gThankYou, watch our “About Us” Video and visit gThankYou today!

    Learn More About gThankYou – Watch Our “About Us” Video:

    gThankYou, LLC (www.gthankyou.com) is based in Madison, Wisconsin. Contact: Rick Kiley, Chief ThankYou! Officer, gThankYou, LLC at info@gthankyou.com or 888-609-2234.

    Follow the Company Blog — “Celebrating Work”
    Join the Conversation @gThankYou

    “G” logo and “Certificates of Gratitude” are trademarks and “gThankYou” is a registered trademark of gThankYou, LLC.

    Read Full Post

How gThankYou Certificates Work

Step 1

Order Certificates

Choose the gThankYou Certificates you want and order them online or by telephone.

Step 2

Ship directly to your business

Your order is delivered by UPS. Nearly all orders ship the day received. Overnight shipping is available.

Step 3

Distribute to your employees

Personalize your gThankYou Certificates with Recipient and Giver names (optional) and give them to employees.

Step 4

Redeem at any grocery store

Recipients redeem Certificates at major U.S. grocery stores and select the items they want.