March 4, 2011

Employee Appreciation Day

A Recognition Professionals International’s founding Board member, together with his publishing company, Workman Publishing, created Employee Appreciation Day as a way of focusing the attention of all employers, in all industries on employee recognition. So Employee Appreciation Day first arrived on calendars in 1995. It is always the First Friday in March.

Employee recognition is more powerful than any other motivator. We all know cash bonuses are spent on bills and many perks are soon forgotten. Personalizing recognition can create a memory and those memories build higher performance. Recognition can take a hundred forms and variations.

Some Are Few Suggestions:

1. Ask an employee to write down six ways they would like to be rewarded. Anything goes. The only rule is that half the ideas need to be low cost or no cost.

2. Schedule lunch dates with employees. Give them an opportunity to select the luncheon site, and use the time to simply get to know them better.

3. Offer a free one year subscription to an employee’s favorite business magazine and have it sent to their home.

4. Consider a gift certificate entitling an employee to lunch with you or another mentor of his/her choosing for the purpose of being coached on one or more topics.

5. Offer a shopping spree to a local supply store for an employee to get items no staplers or paper clips allowed to personalize his/her office or carrell.

6. Purchase a company “toy” your employees would most enjoy; a cappuccino machine, dart board, volleyball court, exercise room.

7. If an employee stays late/goes above and beyond to complete a project, send the employee and his/her partner to a nice dinner.

8. Send a handwritten note of thanks for the completion of a job well done.

9. Give a fun-loving employee a series of On your mark-get set-GO cards that they can redeem at their discretion, e.g; Leave work early to go to a movie, or shopping, or play ball.

10. Give the gift of wellness. Have a limousine pick up an employee for a full day at a spa. Give gift coupons for ballroom dance, yoga or golf lessons.

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