17 Best Employee Appreciation Ideas 2021


If you thought that it’s adequate to hand out a few checks or send out a standard appreciation mail to show your employees that they’re valued, it’s simply not enough!

The employer-employee relationship is like any other – it needs some work to keep it going, and the benefits of a good one can make all the difference to your life.

Why Is Employee Appreciation Important?

Best Employees Appreciation Ideas 3

Though HR departments often use the terms “appreciation” and “recognition” interchangeably, there are crucial differences between the two.

Recognition is a response to good performance and often entails giving monetary compensation, promotion, awards, or a hefty bonus. However, it involves working in a competitive environment and often under unequal conditions. It is also something that is decided by the authorities at the top.

On the other hand, appreciation focuses on the person’s intrinsic value as perceived by the organization. It is not so much concerned with what they do as with who they are and how much the organization and their co-workers value them.

It is also a way to validate them and let them know that their contribution and presence are needed and acknowledged.

Sometimes these two factors go hand in hand, but most of the time, they provide employers with opportunities to connect with employees in two different ways.

Employees Appreciation helps to:

What To Focus On?

Don’t forget that we do have a formal Employee Appreciation Day on the first Friday in March. But that doesn’t mean you do something boring and routine such as putting up an “Employee Of The Month” notice on the bulletin board or handing out a standard award.

These ideas were so yesterday! Today’s employee wants something unique, engaging, and relevant. It need not be expensive, extravagant, or over the top in any way.

A simple, sincere hand-written note from the CEO with the employee’s name and acknowledging their contribution can work wonders. The trick is to be timely and specific.

i. Don’t Miss Out Important Life-Events

Birthdays, anniversaries, and other milestone events in life are an excellent opportunity to show appreciation.

You can keep it simple with a cake and candles, or splurge on a special catered lunch. Some employers give their staff a rain-check on a day off, to be taken whenever they want, to celebrate a special event.

ii. Peer Pleasure

Make a video that has peers telling the employee how they feel about working with her/him, highlighting great moments, etc. You can also organize a video conference with employees across geographies joining in to show appreciation.

Being acknowledged by peers and co-workers is extremely valuable, especially when there’s a competitive environment.

It also helps people to bond and connect and acknowledge the contribution of maintenance staff, contract workers, temps, etc.

iii. Pay Attention To Unique Interests

Avoid standard, off-the-shelf gifting ideas. Take the trouble to understand your employees’ unique personalities, hobbies, interests, talents, etc., and customize your gifts accordingly.

17 Great Employee Appreciation Ideas

Best Employees Appreciation Ideas

1# Instant Appreciation

Spot-awards show your employee that you recognize great performance immediately. Keep a store of coupons, tickets to sports events/theater/concerts, restaurant discount-coupons, gift-cards, travel-vouchers, etc. to hand out then and there. An experienced financial adviser from San Francisco can give you great inputs.

2# Lunch Out

The packaging of any food item is not to be taken lightly because it can affect greatly on your business. In our daily lives, we pay more attention to what we are buying, when every food that we see in the market is being preserved and protected by its package. If the packaging is not doing its job properly, the food inside will become stale. This also expands to the restaurants and their packaging. Even though the food you buy at the restaurants needs to be eaten fresh, the packaging still has to be good enough, so the food stays hot, and in shape/appearance, it is meant to be in. If you can come up with packaging, that not only protects your food but is also presentable, then you have hit the jackpot. Many companies provide contract packaging to businesses and restaurants, and if you cannot handle the packaging by yourself, then you can take help from such companies. It would be great if you can add a bit of creativity to your food packaging, and if you don’t know how to do that, we are here to give you some ideas about that! 1. Eco-Friendly Our climate is changing along with our living conditions. Our planet is not meant to tolerate such huge amount of wastes that are destroying the trees and the climate. In these times, it falls on everyone one of us to play our part, and as a restaurant business owner, you should not feel any different. Take this opportunity and play your part by making the food packaging eco-friendly. Every plastic food packaging of your restaurant that your customer uses, and throws away contributes to the worsening condition of our planet. When you make your food packaging environment-friendly, your customers will know that you care about them as much as the environment they all live in. Brands that are more social awareness are seen as trustworthy as compared to other brands, and that is good for your sales. 2. Use Your Packaging To Communicate Your food packaging is the only thing with which you can communicate with your customer. What do you want to use this opportunity for? Almost every brand uses packaging to advertise their brand name. Hence you can find the logo or brand name on the packaging of the food, but printing your logo on the packaging is not it. It needs to communicate a message that you have to come up with. Brand the packaging your food arrives in and everything that it inside it, including the napkins. 3. Splash Of Color The more colorful your food packaging will be, the more it will attract other people. Think of it in a way that can increase your sales. If someone is eating from your restaurant, and another person sees the colors and the vibrant packaging of food, s/he will be intrigued to find out more about the brand. You can add vibrant colors to your food packaging and mix them up with the design, or make it look like a splash of different watercolors. Anything that can catch the onlooker’s eye! 4. Compartmentalization If you have any deals in your restaurants, instead of placing different items in a bag and make it hard for your customer to pick it up, you can construct just one box. In this box, there should be different compartments for different items such as rice, burger, fries, etc. a lot of people prefer takeaway over dining at the restaurant, and it can get difficult, not to mention, messy, to pick up a single bag stuffed up with everything along with the drinks. 5. Multi-Tasking Many people face a problem with the packaging when it is too small, for instance, the packaging of French fries. Some people do not have the time to sit at the restaurant or eat at their own house. People with busy schedules are always on the go, and they need to eat everything while they are in the car or bus. A major problem that many customers feel need to be resolved is the packaging of the fries. If someone needs to eat fries with ketchup, s/he has to pour it on them all, and that is nothing but a disaster. There is nothing where a customer can put the ketchup on, and you can come up with a solution. Make a tiny pocket in the container/package, that customer can pull out and put ketchup inside in. 6. Comfort Your food packaging should provide your customers with comfort. A lot of time, food is packaged in bags that cannot be lifted easily because there is no handle, or place, to hold them from. If you are giving your customers food inside a bag, you should construct a handle at the top of the package so they can be lifted easily. The packaging of the food item should also not be rigid because you are aiming at making the customer’s comfort level better. Design the packaging in a way that your customer can open it up in the form of a giant plate or a tray where they can put other ingredients like ketchup or sauces. Many customers pay close attention to what their food comes into, and if they are impressed with the presentation, there is a chance that they will come back for more as well! About the Author: Mark Berry is a seasoned designer & creative director with ten years of experience in Chicago, IL. Food Packaging Agency. In his free time, he writes blogs about amazing packaging tips and tricks.

A spontaneous lunch out for the winning team, or a specially catered lunch with the CEO, a quick lunch at the neighborhood bistro, or a fun break at the newest restaurant in town can energize the entire group. Keep it as a surprise, and you can double the fun as well as show how much you care.

3# Experiences

If you can afford it, there’s nothing that’s welcomed more than a new experience. Balloon rides, wine and cheese tasting, art/craft classes, pottery making, whitewater rafting, adventure sports, test-driving the latest luxury automobile, volunteer work, and much more will give them pleasant memories connected with the company and their work.

4# Wellness Products/Experiences

A day at the spa, a full-body health check-up, self-care advice, grooming tips, discounts on wellness products, etc. are a great idea.

5# Outings/Picnics

Never lose their charm, if they’re organized well.

6# Treats

Surprise delivery of candy, flowers, soft-toys, cake, coffee n donuts, cookies, or even pizza is always welcomed.

7# Fame Wall

Fame Wall is a great way to show public appreciation

8# Social Media

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Say it loud and clear on Facebook or Instagram.

9# Fun Bots and Apps

If you’re in software, it’s easy to create fun bots and apps that pop up on everyone’s screen to show appreciation for a great performance, event, or just to say the employee is valued.

10# Education and Training

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Short-term courses, training events, seminars, conferences, and learning opportunities are eternally valued.

11# Mall Trips

Get them to join a mall-walkers group, or go on a sponsored shopping spree, with a fun coffee-break thrown in for good measure.

12# Karaoke Night

Everyone’s a closet singer, and there’s nothing like a karaoke night to bring out hidden talents!

13# Acknowledge them on your company website

Make Website for retail business

This is a great way to recognize and appreciate cleaning and maintenance staff, service providers, contract workers, etc. who may otherwise remain invisible.

14# Arrange for commute

This is a great way to ease the commute for someone who lives far away from their workplace. Arrange for a pre-paid cab-ride for a week, and they’ll never forget the convenience and comfort.

15# Family get-to-knows

It puts a face to what your employee goes home to every day when you arrange for family meet-ups. Try and keep the groups small and don’t make it an anonymous jamboree.

16# Focus Away from Work

Recognize and appreciate other interests, talents, and hobbies the employee has – art, music, HAM radio, volunteering, whatever.

Brag on their behalf so that the rest of the team knows more about the employee.

17# Pet-day

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Pet-day is a great way to get to know your employees’ furry friends. Plan a day where employees can either bring their pets in to work (if it’s feasible), go to a pet park or pet-friendly restaurant, or give a presentation about their pets.

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