If you take care of your employees, they will take care of your business. Employee Appreciation Day is often centered around those who make great things happen every day at work, however it’s time to question this trend, realize why this day came into existence and reimagine employee appreciation. And while there are ways and means of doing it, here are some ways you must definitely avoid:
Quit being lame
“People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Take time out of your busy schedule to pause, reflect, and appreciate consistently. Get creative with your appreciation, it is not a tick-in-the-box, it needs to be done 365 days a year, not just this one day.
PS: Just a lame “Good job!” is not going to do the trick anymore!
No gift cards
The Beatles rightly sang ‘Money can’t buy me love.’ And neither can a Rs 250 gift card make your employees feel appreciated and love you. Doling out gift cards is an impersonal and easy way of making your employees valued. Sure, they can buy coffee with it, but much better would be indulging in a personal act of service, like asking each of them what they would want to drink and picking it up or making it for them.
Before you place that order, let’s take a minute and decide against it. Your employees don’t want donuts to be appreciated. Appreciate them in a manner that conveys your intent to appreciate their efforts, not just a necessity to extend a thanks. Tell them why you value their contribution. Donuts are a replacement for croissants, not appreciation!
No employee of the month wall
Do you really think pasting the pictures of your employees on the wall or writing their names on it makes them feel appreciated? Well it might work for some, but there are a lot of downsides of this conventional way of recognizing employees. Well depicted in the comedy film, Employee of the Month, the competition among the workforce brews until it destroys team dynamics. Promote collaboration, not competition & appreciate your entire team. For each is making a difference in their own way!
Don’t wait for Employee Appreciation Day
When an employee truly puts in the effort, reward her or him with kind words. Make them realize that you value them. That they are an integral part of the fabric of your team. It is not just about appreciating them for when the target is achieved. It is about empathizing and appreciating their struggles, their contribution, their progress. It is about letting them know that they matter--not just on one day of the year. And, not just out of a mandate. Genuinity matters.
“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them” - John F. Kennedy
It is not about saying a “thank you” on a customary day, it is about making employees feel they matter, which surely goes beyond a day and much beyond formalities. If you haven’t already thought of ways to do it, start thinking now and create your own unique appreciation style, one which your employees will truly appreciate.