Are you ready for National Employee Appreciation Day tomorrow? We hope you are, because your workers deserve to be recognized! And according to our 2014 Employee Engagement & Organizational Culture Report, only 21% of employees feel strongly valued on the job—that number is way too low, and this holiday is the perfect day to start work on fixing it.
If you didn’t know about this date, or you just forgot, it’s okay—we’ve got you covered. Here are six fun employee recognition ideas that you can still use today to make sure your workforce gets to enjoy the holiday tomorrow.
Quick and Easy
Just because you don’t have days to prepare doesn’t mean you can’t still give your employees a treat.
1. Casual Friday: Do you have a business or business casual dress code? Tell your team to dress down tomorrow. Let them know that you recognize their hard work and that they deserve a day to relax a little. You could even take it a step further and suggest that everyone wear fuzzy slippers instead of regular shoes!
2. Personal notes: Handwrite a note for each member of your team that recognizes what they’ve done well lately and why you’re glad to work with them. You don’t need to be a gifted writer or use elaborate stationery. Simple but sincere words make a huge impression.
If you’re really short on time, try out these ideas that can be executed on the day itself.
3. Provide treats: Order a pizza lunch for the whole team, pick up fresh-baked goodies from a nearby bakery, make a quick grocery run to get ingredients for an ice cream sundae bar ... Any kind of treat will do. What’s important is that you can give your employees a break where they can socialize and grab something tasty.
4. Gift cards: Everyone could use a little extra spending money, such as a gift card for coffee. It only takes a minute to buy a stack of gift cards from the local coffeehouse—or you could save even more time by getting online gift certificates. Now keep in mind that this kind of recognition gesture can feel generic, so don’t rely on it all the time. But you can use it occasionally as a fun reward.
Start Now, Finish Later
Also consider using the holiday as a time to set a larger recognition idea in motion.
5. A day off: Let your team know that they’re getting a day off, and have a discussion to find the date that works best. If having an entire day off is too difficult to schedule, try a half-day or a work-from-home day. You can support them by rescheduling meetings or deadlines that fall on that date.
6. Team activity: Have the team vote on the next fun group outing. A pub crawl? Attending a baseball game? Laser tag? Arrange for the company to bankroll the activity. They’ll enjoy having something to look forward to.
No matter how limited you are on time or resources, use one of these ideas to show your employees that you appreciate them. They deserve it.