No matter how big or small your organization may be, the truth of the matter is that it is your people that make up the business. At the end of the day, it is the collective efforts of these various individuals that determine your success and you know what drives an individual’s efforts? Good ol’ appreciation.
Meaningful rewards, timely recognition and a well-deserved pat on the back go a long way in keeping your employees happy and satisfied, in turn helping you retain them in your organisation. “Compensation” is what your employees receive for doing the job you hired them for. But “recognition” is the honour they receive for the efforts they put in beyond what was expected of them.
Unfortunately, several organizations look at rewards and recognition purely as a cost line. Now, although it is never a bad idea to be as cost-effective as possible, investing in rewards for your employees ultimately pays in far greater ways. With our experience, we are aware of what an incredibly difficult challenge it can be to balance cost-effectiveness and reward initiatives. That’s why we’re here to help, with 7 ways to reward employees that would make them feel appreciated:
- Birthdays are always special: Sure, some see it as all about getting old. But that’s not to say they don’t see it as a day of celebration. Be generous and give your employees a paid day off on their birthdays. If momentary work pressure does not allow you to do so, you can always arrange for a nice little birthday party at the office. A small cake and some flowers and balloons go a long way in making anyone feel special. As long as it made clear that it is their special day, little festivities should be enough to cheer them up.
- Respect your employees’ needs. We know what you’re thinking. How can you translate respect into a reward? Well, it can be something as simple as recognising the family commitments your employees have. That’s it. Understand your employees and show compassion. They might need to attend to a loved one in the hospital, pick up their kids from school on a particular day (everyone knows about those) or attend an important family occasion. Value their commitments and they in turn will value your considerations.
- Cliched as it may sound, one of the best rewards you can give your employees is just a gesture that says ‘Thank You’. These two simple words always evoke warm and fuzzy feelings and can be a great reward for an employee, to express the sentiment that the company has recognized his/her hard work. Every month, crown a new performer of the month with a badge. In a fun way, refer to them as ‘champion’ in regular conversations (even if it makes them blush). Occasionally you can make arrangements for a small dinner party and invite your employees’ families over to office without letting them know! A sweet surprise indeed.
- So, every now and then, a star employe emerges. Well, let them know who they are! Let co-workers write something they truly like or admire about the best performer. Then put it all together on a scrap paper along with an office group photograph and give it to him/her. It makes for a precious yet inexpensive gift.
- When an employee does something really worthwhile for the company, ask the entire staff to give him a good round of applause at a meeting. Nothing works better! This however will not work if you choose to give someone critical advice on their performance in front of a group!
- Pay it forward! Ask the managerial position holders to write secret hand-written notes of appreciation to their subordinates who have performed well. This will not only keep the employee guessing but also will ensure that they are nice to everyone around (not knowing who has written them a note).
If one looks at it objectively, all employees expect is some amount of understanding, recognition and trust from their superiors. Once you understand this and act accordingly, the office becomes a much better place to work.
Do you have any more ideas to add to our list? Let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org