Employees, today want to be acknowledged and work in an environment where efforts are recognised and contributions are valued. And recognition today is no longer only about tangible and monetary benefits, nor is it about conventional top down reward programs. It is about being personal, authentic, heartfelt and having a human touch. It is also about being acknowledged publicly and innovatively. And, somewhere while, we all value the efforts and contributions of people around us, in our day to day work pressures and commitments, we often miss out on acknowledging and appreciating those, who through their support and hard work continue to contribute to various aspects of our lives.
At EY, we believe that a simple ‘Thank you’ goes a long way in bringing people together and building relationships. With this in mind, we annually celebrate “Thank you week” - a truly unique initiative that takes recognition beyond the obvious. It is about expressing gratitude to all those who make up our working world - reportees, peers, seniors, office help, society and families. Thank you week is a week - long celebration across all 24 EY offices in India, wherein each day of the week is dedicated to expressing gratitude to one of these categories of stakeholders through innovative and engaging initiatives.
The first day of the week is typically about recognising reportees – formality takes a back seat on this day and genuine gratitude comes to the forefront, when managers give out personalised thank you notes for their reportees and spend some fun time over Ice-creams and coffee, and alongside answer a volley of questions in Rapid fire round, where they are put to test on how well do they know their reportees.
Day two of the week is about recognising peers – a celebration of collaboration and teaming. Success can’t be spelt without ‘U’, and that can’t be more true, when the ‘U’ stands for Peers – because they are the ones who pitch in when help is needed the most. Symbolising this friendship, peers express their gratitude to each other through mementoes such as lapel pins, bands and also dressing up to a theme and getting clicked in photo booths set up in offices.
Day three is about recognising bosses – because we know that everybody needs a positive stroke once in a while, especially if they are the ones in charge all the time. Just like Superheroes have their unique traits of agility, intelligence, power, etc., bosses also have their special qualities. As a recognition of these qualities, the theme for the day is ‘My boss! My superhero!’, where reportees give personalised notes of thanks through Superhero Thank you cards such as Batman, Spiderman, Batgirl. Bosses are also nominated for the Superboss award by their teams for being fabulous mentors and role models and winners are felicitated at a glittering ceremony across offices.
Office boys, security guards and house-keeping staff, are always working behind the scenes to take care of our many needs and make our busy lives more manageable. As an appreciation of the fabulous job they do, Day four is about thanking office help. And on this Day, we celebrate their awesomeness by organising a grand ceremony for them, wherein members of senior management and employees thank them publicly, distribute gift hampers to them, and get into their shoes by getting behind counters to serve eatables and drinks to them.
At EY, we are building a better working world not just for our people but also the society. And as a recognition of this, Day five is about recognisingsociety and families of our employees. As a mark of our support to society, employees can leave behind the formal dress code by wearing jeans to work and in exchange contribute money towards an identified NGOs. Over the years, this initiative has helped raise close to 9 Lacs. Last but not the least, the biggest thank you goes out to the families of employees for their constant support and encouragement. This year, we celebrated our bond with the families of our employees through the ‘Lights! Camera! FamilEY!’ contest, where we recognised those pictures of our employees that truly captured the integration of EY and their families.
Thank you week is special, not because of what we do, but why we do it. And our people tell us that while getting a note of appreciation from someone is special any day, when it is part of ‘something bigger’ like a Thank you week, it is even more cherished and celebrated. As an initiative, it continues to create great positivity and connect amongst our people, year on year by reaching out to all our people at the same time irrespective of their level, location, role, etc. Gratitude is indeed a great attitude!