They help your product or service reach new heights, keep customers happy, make everything go smoothly in the office, and a whole lot more. Who are we talking about? Your office employees – the driving force behind the growth and efficient operation of the workplace.
However, they are faced with various obstacles on the regular like the woes of commuting, technology snags, intermittent tight deadlines – it can be easy for them to feel burnt out and underappreciated.
It’s important they feel appreciated all of the time, but Employee Appreciation Day – a day dedicated to express how much you value all of their dedication and hard work – is approaching to really get the point across. Luckily for you, we have rounded up ways you can celebrate in your office this year.
Throw an Employee Appreciation Day party
One of the best ways to celebrate employees is to throw a party!
Pulling off an office party requires you to clear out an area in the workplace so all employees can comfortably mingle. You should also decorate the space and set up some tables to keep food, drinks, and other party goods – check out Quill’s folding tables if you don’t have anything on hand to use. We even have a convenient office party checklist to make sure it all goes smoothly. If your staff is big enough, you may need to consider renting out space; this could be a hip bar, bowling alley, or somewhere else that fits everyone and encourages a good time.
Regardless of where you host it, a good party also needs good music – possibly even a DJ. This probably isn’t as much of an option if hosted somewhere else, but depending on the venue it could be. Alternatively, you can have employees take turns DJ’ing on a service like Spotify over some quality speakers. Don’t have speakers? Quill has those too!
Lastly, for a party meant to show appreciation for employees, the CEO or someone highly ranked in the company should be present to make some sort of speech that expresses his or her gratitude.
Make the Employee Appreciation party an event
Sure you can throw an ordinary run-of-the-mill party, but you can also celebrate Employee Appreciation Day by making it an event. Making a simple “party” turn to into an “event” can be done in a number of ways:
- Make it themed – Centering the party on a place, holiday, or fictional world (Harry Potter anyone?) can really bring it to the next level. This will vary depending on the personalities of employees, their age, and the culture of your workplace. If you’re blocked for ideas, we happen to have ideas for a Mardi Gras-themed office party. You can also browse our wide assortment of party supplies and decorations to see if anything sparks an idea.
- Just Dance – Another way to spice up the party is to make a dance floor. Just be sure to include some dance-worthy tunes in the music list and the space is open enough so people can dance without accidentally bumping into each other too often.
- Games – Parties with games are simply just more fun! Having some sort of “Office Olympics” by making teams from different departments can strengthen workplace bonds and keep things exciting – however this is ideal for an outdoor/day time party. If at night, you can bring in a karaoke machine or another indoor friendly game.
- Invite Others – Usually “parties” become “events” when there are more people. Consider inviting other neighboring offices or companies that your staff collaborates with on a regular basis. If you’re playing a competitive game, this is also a great way to break out teams – Company vs. Company.
A party (or “event”) for Employee Appreciation Day is probably the most ideal way celebrate, however there are also a number of other ideas – possibly even in conjunction with the party!
Let them eat cake – and more!
Sometimes free food goes a long way in regards to showing your appreciation. Start the day off right with free coffee, donuts, fruit, eggs, and other breakfast foods; it’ll help combat those commuting woes. You can also provide a catered lunch or a dessert bar for those with a sweet tooth – just make sure you don’t have anyone suffer poor Milton’s fate at Initech.
Alternatively, you can also have a happy hour bar in-office or nearby to help people relax after a long day.
Take a trip
Getting employees out of the office is a great way to improve general morale and bring everyone closer together; spending time outside of the workplace is great for coworkers to get to know each other better.
Where you go can vary greatly. Some pretty universal options include museums, concerts, or a 3D/Imax movie. If you’re in a warmer climate, a day at the beach or an amusement park would add some thrills to the day. For those in cooler environments there is also the option for skiing, snow tubing, or another winter adventure. Or, if you have an indoor waterpark around, it will have the added bonus of reminding employees that warm weather is around the corner.
Get a gift for the office
Something that everyone can enjoy is another way to not only show appreciation, but also make the workplace more fun. A flat screen TV in the breakroom – complete with video games – or a ping pong/foosball/pool table can help improve office culture. Free beverage or snack machines are also a welcome addition to any office space. Depending on your company rules, a kegerator is a possibility too.
If funds allow it, there is also the option of giving everyone a big gift like an iPad!
Other smaller ideas
These are all pretty big ideas, but there are also small ways you can show your appreciation:
- Decorating the office to improve mood and morale.
- Letting everyone leave early, start late, or simply just giving everyone a day off never hurts.
- Personalized notes to each employee will display a deeper appreciation.
- Having a masseuse come in to pamper employees will help ease the stresses of work.
- Mini gifts and treats on everyone’s desk will spread a little bit of cheer.
The options really are endless! It boils down to the types of employees you have, how many employees you have, your budget, and the type of workplace it is.
Hopefully something on this list will work for your office, and feel free to mix and match as you see fit! No one ever said you only needed to do just one. Also, remember, don’t forget to remind employees you value them all of the time – not just once a year.