Team members / Unsplash

Employee Appreciation Day is coming up on 1st March 2024, and it is the perfect opportunity for business leaders and employers to recognise the hard work that their people have done towards the company’s mission.

In today’s day and age, a great corporate culture has grown to become vital in helping a business achieve long-term success, and thus it is vital for employers to show recognition and appreciate their employees all year long. However, Employee Appreciation Day is the ideal occasion to ensure workers feel heard, appreciated, and welcome.

Most of the time, workweeks centre around business objectives, decisions from management, or customer issues. On the other hand, this special day, falling on the first Friday of March, should be focused on the teams of employees that make things happen every single day.

Studies have found that employee recognition and appreciation can go a long way in helping the workforce feel more motivated and engaged, which in turn improves job performance, as well as customer experience. Additionally, when employees feel that they are being acknowledged and appreciated, there is a significantly less chance of them experiencing burnout.

Here are five enriching, yet enjoyable, ways business leaders can prioritise their workforce and celebrate Employee Appreciation Day to the fullest.

1) Volunteering

Volunteering at a local environmental NGO, a senior living community, or any other form of charity can work wonders for employee morale.

Research has shown that 70 per cent of employees feel that volunteer activities are more likely to boost morale than company-sponsored happy hours or other related events.

These initiatives help employees recognise that they are working at a company that is in touch with its community, contributing to helping those that are in need of it the most.

Additionally, volunteering can serve as a way to foster teamwork, build great memories, and also allow employees to get to know their colleagues more.

2) Organise team games or a socialising break

Team games such as scavenger hunts, pub quizzes or office Olympics can be great opportunities for teams to know each other better in a fun environment. This also allows for healthy competition between teams, while also encouraging innovative thinking that can be implemented in their day-to-day work.

Given that many companies now have hybrid or remote working arrangements, a day together can be very rewarding when it comes to getting the team together and establishing a greater connection.

Otherwise, this can also be done through a more laid-back video call, where employees can socialise rather than focus strictly on their work.

3) Go on a company trip

Employee Appreciation Day can be a day where employers allow their teams to be more in touch with nature, learn more about their surroundings and history, as well as get a break from life at the office.

Business leaders can organise a field trip to a local museum or a day filled with activities at a park. Since many teams are now multicultural, this can go a long way in making expats feel more at home.

This can also help in creating a memorable day for the employees, having fun together while enjoying local attractions.

4) Bring some treats

Everyone loves a sweet treat from time to time.

Whether they are cupcakes, doughnuts, candy or maybe a small snack, every employee appreciates when their employer brings some of their favourite treats to the workplace.

This may be increasingly difficult to do if teams are working remotely. However, business leaders can work around this, possibly sending a small box of packaged treats through mail, or maybe a gift bag with company-branded clothing, water bottles or gift cards.

5) Start a mentorship programme

There is arguably no better day than Employee Appreciation Day to start a mentorship programme.

Employee engagement is crucial for long-term success, and mentorship can be particularly helpful in giving this a much-needed boost.

Business leaders should think about how they can help their employees learn and grow in a fun and healthy environment. While employers can opt for conferences and course tuition, this can be too expensive for many businesses.

Instead, they can establish a mentorship programme that empowers employees to build relationships, shadow colleagues in other roles, and also find opportunities for growth.


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