Making Appreciation a Part of the Culture

You won’t find much discussion about employee appreciation without it being also a discussion on company culture. Appreciation is important to show but it takes more than the occasional gift card to establish an environment of gratitude which is important to do for the sake of employee satisfaction (and therefore higher retention rates).

That being said, sometimes employers are not sure where to begin so we compiled a list of some options. But we present them with this caveat: the most important demonstration of appreciation an employee can give is by promoting a culture of collaboration, communication, trust and follow-through, and flexibility. It’s when an employee feels they are valued and their contributions and well-being considered that they are most productive and happy.

Employee appreciation ideas

Some of these are traditional, some more innovative. All of them should be done consistently.

  1. Years of service celebration. Whether it’s one year or ten, employees should be acknowledged for their dedication to the company.
  2. Appreciation events. Regular outings or in-house celebrations are an easy way to build comradery and keep the appreciation train going. They don’t have to be elaborate or expensive, in this case it’s really the thought that counts. But, do participate in them as much as possible. It’s important for employees to see management make it a point to connect.
  3. Public shout-outs. Involve marketing and highlight outstanding staff on social media pages. An easy and often very welcome move. 
  4. Employee of the month, or always acknowledging project done well. Both of these can provide regular opportunities to celebrate great employees.
  5. Regular pay bumps, paid time off, customized benefits. I don’t think we need to comment on how effective these things are in saying thanks!
  6. Employee development. Offering skill training is a benefit to both the employee in their career development and for the company’s own growth.
  7. Consistent feedback. Offering feedback on a regular basis demonstrates to the employee that their efforts are being appreciated, and their own voices heard. 
  8. Reward cultural contributions, not just work-related. If there’s an employee who brings a great vibe to the office, acknowledge it! Often the people who make positive change to the company culture are doing so by their personality, which is invaluable.

Hopefully this list is helpful in developing an appreciation program for your employees. They are effective methods in extending thanks and will in turn help foster a positive company culture. If you’re interested in learning more (or getting going!) Eos HR can help! We’re a team of HR professionals helping small businesses implement smart solutions to stay relevant and create positive change in their industry. Schedule a free consultation today to learn more.

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