The founder of Chobani is setting the bar very high for employee appreciation. Recently, he gave 10% of the company to his employees. While not every company can afford to do this, I would like to offer an article with four other unique ideas to show employee appreciation.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve probably heard about the founder of Chobani, Hamdi Ulukaya, setting aside 10 percent of the company to give to his employees. The company was recently evaluated at as much as $5 billion. When the company goes public, some of the more senior employees will own stock worth over $1 million.
What prompted Ulukaya’s generosity? In an article for the New York Times he said “I’ve built something I never thought would be such a success, but I cannot think of Chobani being built without all these people.”
Talk about employee appreciation.
Unfortunately, not everybody’s organization reaches Chobani-levels of success. But that doesn’t mean we don’t still love our employees and value their hard work. For those who don’t have millions to give to their workforce, here are four other out-of-the-box ideas for showing employee appreciation:
1. Shout your praises on social media
Many employees aren’t even receiving the recognition basics like “thank you” or “great job.” The 2014 Recognition Trends report from my company, Quantum Workplace, found that 74.7 percent of hostile employees feel they don’t receive enough praise.
There’s no excuse for that. Especially now with social media.
Many organizations only view social media as a way to increase their brand presence. However, it also offers a simple, but effective way to showcase your employees and their accomplishments.
By regularly tweeting about employees’ successes or posting video compilations about their efforts, you’re able to recognize them publicly. Having all employees’ friends and followers see they are appreciated also goes a lot further than praise that is confined to the office.
2. Offer concierge services
Work/life balance is something that can be difficult to achieve. Particularly, when you’re working long hours. That’s probably why a 2016 study from Jobvite found 41 percent of job seekers want an employer to support a balanced life.
Show employees you respect and appreciate the time they devote to the company by offering a variety of concierge services. Simple benefits like having dry cleaning drop-off and pick-up, car washes or grocery deliveries allow employees to maximize personal time their own way. Instead of running errands once they leave the office, they can spend time with their family or friends.
The great thing about concierge services is they can be customized to each organization’s budget. You can decide how often or how many services you offer as a sign of employee appreciation.
3. Paid time off to volunteer
What your employees do in the office isn’t the only hard work they do. For people who are involved in charitable organizations or like to volunteer, having time to do that can be just as meaningful and important as what they do nine to five. And that dedication also deserves recognition.
By offering paid time off to volunteer, you can show employees you are proud of their desire to give back. They can spend time working for a cause that matters to them without having to sacrifice equally important vacation time.
Recognize that your employees are actually people. They care about the community and have other passions they’d like to pursue. Time off to volunteer is a great way to respect that.
4. Office field trips
Think back to when you were in school. What was the most exciting thing that could happen on a school day? A field trip. It didn’t matter if it was to a museum or theater performance, it was just fun to get away from the classroom and spend time with your friends.
The same can be true of an office outing.
A 2015 Virgin Pulse survey found that for 40 percent of employees, their co-workers are what they love most about their company. Let the team get out of the office and relax with a trip during the workweek. It can be as simple as a company picnic in a nearby park or a day of laser tag. The point is to show employees they deserve a day of fun every now and again.
Employee appreciation doesn’t have to be a huge gesture. It’s just as important to show your workers they’re valued each and every day. And if you get creative with how you recognize your employees, they’ll know you put real thought into it, taking things to the next level of gratitude.
What are some other out-of-the-box approaches to employee appreciation? Share in the comments below!