• 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.

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  • 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.

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  • Make Your Workplace Thank You a Commitment for 2017

    workplace thank you gthankyou

    What is your team thankful for? Make a commitment in 2017 to the workplace Thank You. (Photo by Sadie Hernandez, Flickr)

    In a memorial tribute to Mary Tyler Moore this week, Baltimore Sun TV critic David Zurawik recalls an iconic example of a workplace Thank You on her show in the 1970s.

    The brief speech Moore gives to her newsroom coworkers during the show finale, in character as the “groundbreaking, professional, working-woman” Mary Richards, still resonates with Zurawik.

    After asking her boss if she can say a few words, she tells the assembled employees:

    “I get to thinking my job is too important to me. And I tell myself that the people I work with are just the people I work with, and not my family.

    “And last night I thought, ‘What is a family anyway?’ They’re just people who make you feel less alone and really loved. And that’s what you’ve done for me. Thank you for being my family.”

    A lot has changed in the workplace four decades later. Zurawik writes that he’s become more cynical in many ways — but he’s still softened by the sentiments of Moore’s character, Mary Richards.

    “I thank Mary Richards and Mary Tyler Moore for showing me how rewarding the workplace can be when you don’t think of the people you work with only as co-workers and the work you do only as a job,” he writes.

    Make your workplace thank you frequent, specific and sincere.January is National Thank You Month. Where does the workplace Thank You rank? Rock bottom.

    A study by the John Templeton Foundation shows that the workplace is one of the last places people regularly thank each other. Study participants reported that they love gratitude — who doesn’t? — but they hold back from expressing it in the workplace.

    Let’s change that! This year, make a commitment to the workplace Thank You. Help your team, from the CEO on down to entry-level employees, be inspired to thank each other every day. It’s easier than you think. Read on to learn how to bring gratitude and Thank You back into the workplace.

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  • Take Fun Seriously on National Fun At Work Day!

    Have fun a work! Celebrate National Fun at Work and engage your workplace.

    Celebrate National Fun at Work Day this Saturday, Jan. 28. It’s easy — everyday celebrations that recognize small wins are a great way to pump up your workplace culture of fun. (Photo via Mike Bryan, Flickr)

    Fun in the workplace doesn’t get the credit it deserves. That’s why we’re celebrating National Fun at Work Day this Saturday, Jan. 28!

    Fun at work — besides being, well, fun — is what sustains us and keeps us motivated in our jobs long-term.

    Yet not enough employers and employees take fun seriously, according to a New York Times article this week by Ayelet Fishbach, “In Choosing a Job, Focus on the Fun.” Fishbach is a professor of behavioral science and marketing at the Booth School of Business at the University of Chicago.

    Fun is serious business, Fishbach argues. It drives retention, productivity and overall happiness.

    Oddly enough, we’re naturally wired to de-prioritize future workplace fun, according to Fishbach. It’s a “basic insight from behavioral science” that people care about the present mainly in the present and not in advance.

    “We fail to realize that the person we are in the present — the one who values intrinsic benefits — is awfully similar to the person we will be in the future,” she writes.

    So jobseekers tend to overestimate the value of good pay and underestimate the value of whether they’ll actually enjoy the work.

    “When envisioning themselves in the future, [employees] predicted that they would almost solely be driven by delayed benefits like salaries,” Fishbach writes.

    The result? Two out of three working Americans are disengaged, according to Gallup. It isn’t that financial benefits aren’t important, Fishbach writes, but nobody wins when money is prioritized over other factors like meaning, impact and day-to-day appreciation.

    HR departments in planning mode do best to recognize the power of fun and help employees engage in their work on a daily basis.

    Read on to find out why celebrating National Fun at Work Day matters and tips for prioritizing workplace fun in 2017!

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  • Pie Gift Certificates Make Any Day a Happy Pie Day!

    Happy National Pie Day!

    Let’s be honest, any day is a good time for pie. But if you need an excuse… enjoy National Pie Day today and share a sweet treat with your at-home or work family. It’s an opportunity to engage and celebrate each other.

    Don’t worry if you missed today, create your own “pie day” or celebrate the next PI Day – March 14th! This is a celebration of the mathematical constant known as pi, or π, the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter, commonly approximated as 3.14159. Mathematicians love pi because “it puts infinity within reach” and has a “tantalizing” tension between order and randomness, according to the New Yorker article “Why Pi Matters.”

    What does math have to do with the pie we eat? Nothing! But Pi Day around the world is celebrated with pie — because why not? — and it’s a great day to have a little fun with coworkers, play math games, celebrate learning and share pie. You can even make your pie in a pi-shaped pie pan.

    Plan now and share your workplace appreciation with a pie celebration and distribute gThankYou! Pie Gift Certificates for any brand, flavor and preparation at favorite grocery stores.

    Thanks Sandra Boyton for the Pie inspiration! Happy #PieDay!

    Read on to find out how gThankYou! Pie Gift Certificates work and how you can share them to show gratitude to employees on Pie Day, Pi Day or anytime!

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  • 365 Everyday Ways to Build Employee Happiness

    Build sustained employee happiness by downloading this free eBook from gThankYou

    Have you downloaded your 2017 Day-to-Day Employee Celebration Calendar yet? Use this FREE tool from gThankYou to build everyday employee happiness this year.

    Happy New Year!

    The celebration-filled holiday season is over, party streamers down, gifts shared and game prizes won. Now what? How will you sustain that workplace spirit and employee happiness into 2017?

    If increasing employee happiness one of your workplace goals for 2017, you’re not alone.

    Organizations big and small are re-evaluating their strategies as Gallup continues to report low employee engagement across industries. Gallup data shows Millennial workers in particular aren’t responding to traditional engagement.

    We know workplace celebrations are a reliable way to engage and motivate employees. A celebration honors excellence, fuels innovation and strengthens teamwork. It gives everyone a chance to fully appreciate individual and team successes.

    But celebrating employees goes well beyond parties and prizes. Sustaining everyday employee happiness, 365 days a year, takes a comprehensive approach and a cultural shift.

    That’s why we here at gThankYou created a “Day-to-Day Employee Celebration Calendar.” It’s a guide to each month of 2017, with practical tips for everyday engagement and appreciation, as well as seasonal and holiday-specific employee recognition ideas and inspiration.

    Read on for a peek at what each month of the calendar offers and how it can help you build a sustainable culture of appreciation.

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