The COBRA Blog

12 Employee Appreciation Ideas for This Friday and Beyond

Posted by Employer Services on Tue, Mar 04, 2014 @ 17:03 PM

HR-Best-PracticesNational Employee Appreciation Day is this Friday. In honor of the event, you may want let your employees know that you appreciate them this week. But, why stop there when you can express employee appreciation all year long?

Some may feel that every day is employee appreciation day. (Or, as Don Draper once said on Mad Men: “That’s what the money’s for!”) Chances are, however, that your employees may feel differently. And, career site Glassdoor noted 80% of employees work harder when a boss “shows appreciation for their work.” 

With appreciation and working harder in mind, here are 12 simple ideas to keep your employees inspired throughout the year: 

  1. Cards: Even in an age of e-mails, texts and PowerPoints, there’s something nice about a handwritten card. Think of it as a way to practice your penmanship while letting employees know that you think they’ve done a great job for the company.
  2. Catered Lunch: A catered lunch from a favorite eatery is always a popular choice. For extra fun, add make-your-own sundaes or gourmet cupcakes for dessert.
  3. Tickets: Depending on your state, company culture and local laws, lottery tickets might be an ideal gift for some employees. If gambling isn’t your (or your employees’) style, then movie tickets would be just as welcome.
  4. Gift Cards: Many employees would love to drink a cup of coffee (or two) on the company’s dime. You can also buy gift cards in bulk at local restaurants or high-end grocery stores.
  5. Company-Wide Car Wash: Hire a car washing company or a group of local high school kids to come to parking lot and wash and vacuum employees’ cars.
  6. Massage Therapy: You can arrange a mass massage therapy session by hiring a provider to prove onsite massages throughout the day.
  7. Movie Day: Treat your staff to a matinee at the local cinema. Be sure to pick something in the PG or PG-13 realm to not offend more sensitive staff members.
  8. Financial Empowerment: Offer a financial education program such as those available through Dave Ramsey to help your employees overcome financial stress and achieve better money management.
  9. Musical Performance: Hire a barbershop quartet, local marching band or other musical ensemble to perform for your employees.
  10. Career Aspirations: Ask each employee to write down their career aspirations, and then bring them up during your annual performance reviews. This demonstrates your interest in their inner lives, and it identifies people who really care about the company.
  11. Coffee Cart: Hire a barista to set up a coffee cart onsite and serve free lattes, mochas and Italian sodas all day.
  12. Time Off: Consider giving your employees an extra day or half-day off (it doesn’t have to coincide with Employee Appreciation Day).

Here’s wishing you a fabulous day with your employees this Friday. For more HR best practices, Affordable Care Act and COBRA administration information and advice, subscribe to our COBRA blog in the top right corner of this screen. 

Tags: cobra administration, Affordable Care Act update, cobra blog, hr best practices, employee appreciation

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