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Top 10 Examples of Employee Appreciation Gifts

employee appreciation giftsYou've heard it before, "you get what you give".  A little appreciation goes a LONG way! What about the saying, “You reap what you sow”. It’s true. Studies have proven again and again that giving to your employees offers one of the best rates in return. So, give away! Obviously verbal appreciation, certificates and public acknowledgements have their place. There’s something about recognition and affirmation from leaders that simply affords a boost in moral, outlook and commitment. Tangible rewards like money, raises and other bonuses are always well received. Here is our top ten idea list for employee appreciation gifts. We’ve also included money saving tips to incorporate significant discounts!

Employee Appreciation Gifts

  1. Gift certificates for spa services. Massages, accupuncture, mud baths, exfoliating peels, aroma therapy and other personal spa services are geared towards mental, physical and sometimes, spiritual health. A gift towards the purchase of individually selected services like this shows recipients how much you value their overall well-being and gives them an invitation to relax. A gift towards spa services would likely convey the message, “We know how hard you’ve been working and we just want you to know how much we value the effort you’ve given!”
  2. Everyone loves good food, but how can you promote health and wellness while rewarding employees with a tasty treat? The nation is trending upwards concerning health and eating better. So restauranteurs are pairing up with nutritionists and health-conscientious chiefs. The result has been impacting national chains like Panera Bread, Jason’s Deli, Noodle’s & Company, Corner Bakery Cafe, Au Bon Pain, Chipotle, Atlanta Bread, Einstein Bros. Bagels, and Taco Del Mar. Another new spot for lean cuisine, My Fit Foods. They’ve been a hit in some areas serving ready-made, but totally healthy and fresh meals. It's like fresh, fast food . . . plus, you have to get out of your car to walk in and get your “to-go” order.
  3. Let’s dance?! Some employees might enjoy a professional partner’s class to learn the tango, ballroom dancing or even swing. Plus, it’ll be an added (not to mention, FUN) aspect of promoting personal fitness, corporately. Set it up so that employees are able to invite family or personal friends and/or so co-workers are comfortable with one another as dance partners. Perhaps it’d be worth it to set up single’s dance lessons and partner training so employees can choose. Have the class scheduled as a group outing so that it’s a special celebration for everyone to enjoy together.
  4. Bringing in a professional chef to teach while cooking might be a hit for a smaller group. For especially small groups, allow each employee to invite a friend to participate too.
  5. Take advantage of your local outdoor area. If you’re near the lake, charter a yacht. If mountains surround you, have a professional hiker lead a tour. Surrounded by the ocean or snow, take advantage of the natural surroundings and have a professional lead your group on an adventure. You'll be taking care of two things at once; letting employees know how much you appreciate what they invest into the company AND increasing their overall wellness. (Remember, doing something new increases brain activity and function while lifting moods!)
  6. Rent a resort and give employees their very own “company vacation”!
  7. It might sound old fashioned, but honor employee achievements with a banquet, picnic or corporate dinner. Schedule a time in the evening to honor high-achievers and acknowledge efforts with certificates, plaques or humorous trophies.
  8. Host a movie night. Depending on the needs of your team, you may simply want to offer gift cards for a set of movie theaters so each employee can select when, where and what to watch and with whom. Or, if you are also working to build team strength, host your own movie night. Rent or utilize a projector and complete the event with concession stand featuring a popcorn maker.
  9. Use a national holiday like Valentine’s Day or Halloween to dote affectionately on employees!
  10. A simple hand-written card from top-level executives or owners may prove a significant (and inexpensive) way to show appreciation.

Budget Saving Tips

Partner with a local venue or service provider to get the highest discount. It’s customary for spas, resorts and food venues to regularly run discounts as incentives for new or repeat business, especially as a way to increase the service package purchased. And generally speaking, most facilities already offer loyalty rewards for repeat customers. Ask about committing to purchase from them again in the future for a deep discount (like $25 off for every $100 spent) if you’re willing to make it an annual treat for employees. Be willing to share the amount of your budget or ask what their minimum purchase requirement would be for significant savings. Lastly, use the off season as leverage to negotiate pricing.

Topics: Employee Incentives & Rewards

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