Valentine’s day gives us a great excuse to show the people who matter to us that we appreciate them.
But the truth is, we should be doing this every day.
Here’s an infographic with 10 sincere, thoughtful and simple ways you can show your employees that you care.
But first, why don’t you start off the day right! Print out these cards and write a nice note for a coworker.
Before you keep reading…
Say Good Morning
When you come to work in the morning (no matter what mood you might be in), it’s so important to recognize that you’re not there alone.
Say hello ??, good morning ☀️, smile, and let everyone know that you see them, and that you’re grateful for them being there.
It’s humanizing. As much as employees are resources, they are first and foremost people.
Without sounding too cheesy (although on today of all days, I think it’s ok) a smile is contagious. Your friendly interaction with your employee might boost their mood and lead to a great interaction between your employee and a customer.
Write A Letter ?
Two words for you..and try not to get too nostalgic.
Pen & Paper.
Do you recall the hours spent practicing cursive in grade school, and – this is probably the best feeling – getting a stack of mail from your parents at summer camp? There’s nothing better.
The process of writing takes time, focus and thought, all sincere ways of showing your employees gratitude in a way that puts e-mail to shame.
Douglas Conant, the CEO of the Campbell Soup Company, penned thank-you notes to each of his employees, amounting to 30,000 notes over the course of his time at the company.
After having been in a car accident and receiving thousands of notes from his colleagues, he realized the impact and then paid it forward.
Give Public Praise
Sending a personalized letter is amazing, but it’s also important to publicly recognize your employees amongst their coworkers.
Publicize success! Spread the good word.
Remember how good it felt in school when you did so well on a test or essay that the teacher actually used you as an example?
People thrive from recognition at all ages and it sets an example for the rest of the team to look up to.
How You Can Recognize Employees Publicly
One way to do this is to create a public recognition board in a common area like a lunch room, or, start a recognition group in the office communication tool such as Slack.
At Officevibe, we have a “Kudos” group in Slack and I must say that it’s active all day with either managers shouting out to their employees, or colleagues giving kudos to one another.
This visibility elevates the positive energy and creates a culture of constant recognition, which breeds motivation and therefore momentum and success.
Keep in mind, you don’t need to wait for huge feats to give praise. The little things matter too, both work and non-work related!
Organize A Group Lunch
Clearing your lunchtime schedule to spend time bonding with your team is a great way to show your employees that you respect them not just as employees, but as individuals.
It’s a way to learn about everyone beyond their workload. Have a great conversation about something other than deadlines. Show them that you are more than just a manager.
If your company is too big for an outing, plan a pizza party ? or a potluck. The point is to let them know that spending time getting to know them is a priority.
This humanizing act is not only fun (and delicious), but creating relationships that go beyond the desk keep people interested in work life, and excited about their role.
Give An Extra Day Off
Work-life balance is key to your employee’s experience at the company.
As much as you claim to support it, do you really?
It’s like saying that we support the environment, but really how many of us actively recycle and compost? (I for one am guilty of this).
Believing in something and participating in something are two completely separate things.
Giving a free pass for a day off is a tangible and above-and-beyond way to recognize your employees’ time and honour what you preach.
Ask Them How It’s Going
This is probably the easiest thing you can do, and it really makes an impact. Just try it.
Pull one of your employee’s aside and ask them how their day is going. And when you ask, really mean it. Put your phone away, make eye contact and care.
You’d be surprised how much people have to say. And you’d be even more surprised by the gratitude you’ll receive from such a simple gesture.
We are all so busy that sometimes we forget that there’s someone at the desk next to us or across the way. We strive to focus, produce and succeed, so it becomes easy to neglect the ‘human’ element of work and office culture.
Humanizing communication as simple as, “hey, how’s it going today?” is what helps the team build relationships founded in trust and respect.
Implementing monthly one on ones is a great way to do this on the regular.
Allow Them To Work Remotely
This idea is a big change for some companies, but I really think the option to work remotely is the way of the future.
Keep in mind it doesn’t work in all situations, and it only functions successfully if it isn’t abused by the team, but the idea is that you have a responsible group of employees who know when it’s more productive for them to work outside of the office for whatever given reason.
The idea is that work should be a place your employees love to come to, not have to come to. Allowing them to work from home when it’s necessary will make the office even more desirable when coming back.
Speaking personally, as a writer, knowing that I have the option to work from a coffee shop or my house for a specific project makes me feel like the essence of my creative job is understood and appreciated.
In this article, Forbes takes a look at the top 100 companies that offer remote working.
Give High Fives All Around
If time is limited and you don’t feel you have the capacity that day to engage in one on one conversations or muse about the weekend, giving high fives or props works wonders.
It sounds cheesy (maybe it is) but I have to say that every time a colleague or our manager comes around our workstation and gives us a props, with no agenda other than to keep motivation up, I smile from the inside out ?.
It’s a quick way to recognize everyone and it lightens the mood with a little reminder to smile and breathe throughout the workday. As important as our jobs are, we aren’t saving lives (unless your job requires you to save lives). So, taking a moment here and there to look up from the screen and connect makes all the difference.
Support A Cause They Believe In
Your employees show interest in your company by working hard for you. Reciprocating this by finding out something that is important to them is a very thoughtful and meaningful way to show them that you care.
Maybe it will inspire you!
An Officevibe Charity Story
A group of employees from Officevibe were raising funds in December for 24h Tremblant, part of the Charles Burney Foundation, a charity that raises money for children.
GSOFT (Officevibe’s parent company) got wind of the efforts and not only offered to double the funds ? that they raised, but they even offered them the resources they needed to help raise funds and awareness.
They allowed the team to use the office space for a 5-7 to present the charity to the team over some food and drinks, and collect donations.
They ended up raising a wonderful about of money for a really great cause and it made the whole team feel awesome. Encouraging this philanthropic energy in your workplace shows that your positive intentions extend to the whole world ?, not just within the confines of your office.
Say Thank You, Always
We learned this in Kindergarten but sometimes we forget to put it into practice.
Thank yous are not only for once a month in a team meeting or during the holidays in a letter.
Those are nice times to reiterate thanks, but they shouldn’t be the only times.
Create a culture of appreciation on your team by giving constant recognition and feedback.
Employees who receive constant recognition are more likely to remain engaged, which is ultimately your end goal, because engaged employees produce good work and keep customers happy.
On Valentine’s day, when you might not want to tell your employee you ‘love’ them per se, thank you might be the next best thing, and it doesn’t get much simpler than that.
You can do it, put your heart into it!
Happy Valentine’s Day everyone ❤️
How do you show your employees that you’re grateful?
Share your ideas in the comments so we can all benefit. I’m sure you have great idaes :)