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17 Ways to Show Your Employees You Appreciate Them

When was the last time you thanked your staff for their hard work? Employee appreciation shows them that the work they’re doing matters, which leads to higher engagement and retention.

Employee appreciation doesn’t have to cost a lot. If you need some ways to say, “Thank You,” check out these 17 ideas:

1. Share a gift card to your company’s favorite local coffee shop.

Everyone needs a little pick-me-up sometimes, so treat your employees to an afternoon coffee.

2. Give your employees an extra day off.

Can’t afford raises or bonuses this year? Give your employees an extra day off. That time off can come in handy during the holidays. Your employees will come back refreshed and ready to work harder.

3. Schedule a group outing.

Spending time together outside of the office will help you and your personnel bond and strengthen your relationships. Bring your employees to a local sporting event or become tourists for the day and do some sightseeing around town.

4. Give employees time to work on a certification.

Learning a new skill or finishing a certification will help your employees advance in their career and will help your small business grow. The skills they learn will help them to be more efficient and improve their work.

5. Create a mentoring program.

A mentoring program can further promote career growth because it gives your employees a chance to shadow someone who has their dream job.

Plus, anyone who’s mentoring another employee will get a morale boost because you recognized their talents by making them a mentor.

6. Order lunch.

If you’re in the middle of a particularly hard week (or month), cater lunch so your employees have one less thing to stress about. It also provides bonding time and boosts your company culture.

7. Recognize an employee of the month.

Set up an employee of the month program. You don’t have to spend a lot – recognize the employee of the month in your company newsletter and print a certificate your employee can display at their desk. You can even have other employees nominate peers they think are working the hardest, so they have incentive to do their job well.

8. Celebrate your employees online.

Don’t just keep the celebrations to yourself. Recognize your employees’ hard work on your company’s social media pages or on your blog. As a bonus, your employees will probably share the posts, so you’ll be able to pickup some more followers.

9. Recognize big (and small) accomplishments.

If an employee lands a huge sale or finishes a project that’s been stressing them out, send out a quick email to your whole staff recognizing the accomplishment. Even if someone does something small that has a big impact, it’s a good time to recognize them.

10. Ask your employees for feedback.

Show your employees that their opinions matter by asking for their feedback (then, act on it!)

11. Offer flexible schedules.

Your employees have busy lives outside of work. It might be difficult for them to juggle their personal lives and work lives, so offer flexible work schedules within reason to make it easier on them.

12. Write thank you notes.

A hand written thank you note can go a long way. Even if there is no gift attached, recognizing someone’s work will mean a lot.

13. Invite your employees into your office.

Your employees might find going to your office intimidating. People usually associate that with being in trouble. Put your employees at ease by inviting them to your office just to chat and thank them for all they do.

14. Close the office early before a holiday.

Close the office early the day before a holiday weekend so your employees can recharge and celebrate with family. And your employees will appreciate the extra time to prepare for the holidays.

15. Start a fun holiday tradition.

Starting a fun holiday tradition (like Secret Santa or a White Elephant Gift Exchange) can give your employees something to look forward to and make them feel like part of the work family.

16. Give your employees some company swag.

Show your employees that you’re proud they’re part of the team by giving them company swag to wear around town.

17. Give bonuses and/or raises.

If it’s in your budget, give your employees a raise or year-end bonus to say “Thank you for hard work! Keep it up!”

How are you going to show your employees you appreciate them this year?