Small Business Brief


Celebrate Their Success: 5 Important Ideas for Employee Appreciation

Did you know there are over 153 million people working in the U.S.?

That’s quite a bit of employed workers. So making your employees feel like they stand out isn’t the easiest task. In fact, it can be quite hard if you’ve never done it before.

But coming up with ideas for employee appreciation doesn’t have to be impossible. And lucky for you, this article is going to tell you some of the best ideas you can incorporate the next time you want to make your team feel special.

Read on to learn more!

1. Awards and Trophies

There’s nothing easier than giving out awards and trophies to your employees. Whether you want to go as silly as the Dundies or as serious as a formal banquet, awards and trophies are the way to go.

These are not hard to give out, and they tend to be cost-efficient, even if you choose to get them engraved. Check out this selection of awards to see what might work for your budget.

These trophies might seem a bit odd at first, but they might mean more to your employees than you think. When was the last time they got an award? It might have been since high school.

And chances are they’ll keep these awards for a long time. This boosts their desire to stay at the company.

Awards and trophies can also create some healthy competition if everyone knows there’s a prize. If you want to give away a top sales team member award, you might see an uptick in sales.

Keep in mind that these awards and trophies shouldn’t be impossible to achieve. It can be a little discouraging for loyal employees who don’t get one. Even a “Most Reliable” trophy might be nice for those who aren’t always your top players. 

2. Awesome Break Room

While it may only be an hour of their day, a break room is one of the most important places your employees go. It’s their chance to break from the monotony of their job and focus on them. 

So, to show them you appreciate them, revamp your break room to make it a fun and relaxing atmosphere. Consider investing in a nicer coffee machine, and ditch uncomfortable chairs for couches and armchairs.

You might even want to change the lighting in the room by adding lamps instead of large light. A lower light setting can create a calmer, more relaxed mood.

Before making any large changes, ask your employees what they want. What sounds like a good idea to you might not be one to them.

The other bonus of creating an awesome break room is that it helps them work harder. If they feel more rested, chances are they will be more productive when they get back to work. 

You show them you appreciate them, and they work harder too? Sounds like a serious win-win. Plus, you get to use the break room too!

3. Company Swag

Everybody loves company swag. It makes people feel like they’re part of the team, and who doesn’t love a free shirt?

Give out company swag to your employees to remind them that they are important to the team. It improves morale, and it will likely help with employee retention. It’s hard to leave a business you see on your coffee mug.

Company swag is also relatively cheap, meaning you can get a lot for little. From sweatshirts to bath towels, slapping your logo on something isn’t a hard task.

You can also use this company swag for marketing your business. If you’re coming up on a trade show or public event consider taking your new t-shirts out for a test run. Company swag has a great lifespan as long as you choose high-quality materials.

4. Early Days Off

There’s a theory that people take up all the time they have to get something done. A three-hour project can take just two if you give them a specific deadline. And many are starting to believe that people who work fewer hours are more productive. 

So, why not take advantage of this while showing your employees that you appreciate them? Simply letting them go home on Fridays early can mean the world to people who have kids or just need a break.

Or tell everyone they can pick one day to leave early. This makes you look like a lenient boss that cares about their employees.

Plus, this will mean that people will be more productive while they are working. And it may even lead to people taking less time off. If they don’t have to take off for doctor’s appointments because they already have a half day off, you won’t have to approve more time off than you need to do.

5. A Raise or Bonus

Nothing is more simple than this. Show your employees that you appreciate them by giving them a raise or bonus. At the end of the day, money is why they came to your company in the first place, and if you can give them more of it, they’ll be happy to stay.

Raises are sometimes hard to give out if you’re on a specific system. If that’s the case, consider doing quarterly or yearly bonuses. 

Remember that you shouldn’t limit raises and bonuses to your salespeople or other key players. Your accountants, secretaries, and social media managers are just as important. Find ways to quantify their work and then reward them for it. 

Need More Ideas for Employee Appreciation?

Now that you’ve read this article, you should have a few ideas for employee appreciation. Remember that your team works hard and that a small act of appreciation can go much further than you think.

Do you still need more ideas for running your business? Learn how to boost office productivity here.