We’ve all seen the headlines: Recruiting at the moment is complex at best. Employers are trying to ramp back up now that more and more people are vaccinated from COVID-19 and returning to some semblance of normal, and this is causing significantly increased competition for talent. When hiring is difficult, employers have to remember to also focus on the other side of the coin: retention.
This is where employee appreciation comes in. It can be a strong retention tool, often with minimal costs. Everyone likes to feel appreciated and valued, so when an employer makes an effort to do exactly that, it can go a long way.
Employee Appreciation Tips
Here are some tips for employers looking to improve their employee appreciation efforts:
- Create a culture in which employees encourage one another, like group dynamics where it’s normal to call out one another’s successes.
- Implement fun forms of recognition, like company newsletters or employee-of-the-month programs. Simple things like this that have minimal cost can help boost morale if administered fairly.
- Train managers to pay attention and celebrate when employees hit milestones, which could include anniversaries of employment or check-in points along the way toward meeting a larger goal or objective.
- When safe, hold team events during which teams participate in a fun activity that is sponsored by the company. (These should, of course, be voluntary to attend.)
- Provide occasional surprise bonuses to recognize a job well done. This could be in the form of actual monetary compensation or a gift like event tickets or other similar items.
- Give employees some leeway in their job tasks. This could mean allowing them a specified portion of the workweek to pursue work projects of their choosing (rather than those dictated by others) or giving them more choice in their development. The key is to give employees a bit of autonomy in what they’re working on to show them they’re trusted and appreciated for their contributions.
- Provide simple free gifts like snacks and drinks. These little gestures can go a long way toward making employees feel valued.
- Train leaders to seek out employees and thank them for a job well done, either privately or publicly. This may seem simple enough, but many employers forget to simply thank employees for their efforts.
- Consider providing extra time off as a reward when major milestones are accomplished or when an emergency workload is handled well.
- Bring in a meal for all employees to have for free during the workday.
- Recognize accomplishments publicly on the company’s social media outlets.
- Give out swag items to employees to celebrate accomplishments, which could, in turn, incentivize other employees who see the items and know that those using them did something to earn them.
What else would you add to this list? What has your organization done to show employees they’re appreciated and valued?