While regular feedback may be part of your usual performance appraisal process, the end of the year provides a great opportunity to reflect how your team has performed, and to recognise key achievements and milestones. Appreciating a job well done is essential for boosting motivation and morale, and it can help build good working relationships too. With that in mind, and with December fast approaching, here are some ideas to help you celebrate your team’s successes, whatever your budget.
1- Send a Thank-You Note
Sometimes, the simplest gestures can be the most meaningful. A handwritten card, with a sincere thanks for each individual’s contribution, can go a long way to making your team members feel appreciated. Just make sure that whatever you write is specific, generous and, most importantly, personal.
2- Give People Extra Time Off
Holiday time is something that all employees are entitled to, but more and more organisations are coming to realise that offering additional time off is a simple yet effective way of rewarding good performance and boosting motivation. So, whether it’s a long lunch, an early finish or an extra day’s holiday, giving people unexpected time off that doesn’t encroach on their annual leave is always a welcome gesture.
Many of your employees will already support a charity, whether through regular donations, volunteering, or taking part in events like sponsored walks to raise money. Find out what each team member’s charity of choice is and make a donation to that charity in their name.
4- Have an Awards Ceremony
It doesn’t need to be all glitz and glamour like the Oscars (unless, of course, you want it to be!) but awarding trophies can give your team members a real sense of achievement. Get creative with your award categories and ask for nominations from across your team. Having an award that people can display on their desks can be a great motivator for other team members too.
5- Lay on a Feast
From providing cakes, cookies or pizza lunches in house to hiring street food trucks or ice cream carts, food and drink treats always go down well. You could hold a beer or wine tasting event, treat your team to a lavish dinner at an exclusive restaurant, or even take them on a private cookery course. (Just be mindful of every team member’s dietary requirements.)
6- Make Time for a Movie
Why not hire a projector and a big screen and show a classic film in your boardroom? Or take your team off to the local cinema to see the latest big screen blockbuster? Some cinemas allow you to hire a whole screen for private events, and as an added bonus, you could even offer to pay for the popcorn too!
7- Get Creative
Think about how you can offer a reward that will stand out as part of your organisational culture. Some companies create cartoons or caricatures featuring individual employees, while others design bobble heads or teddy bears based on their team members, letting staff have fun with how they are portrayed.
8- Don’t Forget About Your Virtual Workers
For people who work remotely, being copied into emails or messages about events they can’t attend, or free food they can’t enjoy, might hurt a little. It could even bring about feelings of isolation or disengagement. To ensure your remote workers don’t miss out, offer or encourage them to arrange similar or equivalent activities. Also, think about how you could involve them, for example by holding a virtual party, with everyone meeting on Skype, Google Hangouts or FaceTime, or sharing pictures on your internal communications channels.
9- Email Blasts
Send an email blast to the team recognizing the exceptional work of one or more individuals. This is always a great way to shine a light on the outstanding work happening within your team. However, make sure that you are not continually celebrating the same person—spread the love.
10- Just Ask…
Teams are made up of Iots of different personalities and you won’t necessarily want to reward them all in the same way. So, if you’re struggling for ideas, why not simply ask them what they’d like (within a set budget)? You may be surprised at what they suggest, and you can rest happy in the knowledge that your reward is something that’s valuable and meaningful to each individual.
11- Take Your Team on a Dream Getaway
And finally, if you are lucky enough to work for an organisation where money’s no object, why not treat your team to an all-expenses paid weekend away, for example on a ski break or to a spa hotel? Trips like this are a great chance for your team members to have fun together, create memories and build deeper relationships as they bond with their team mates outside of the workplace.