The holiday season can be the most stressful time of year for everyone involved in your business. With the constant end-of-year hustle and bustle that most businesses experience, it’s important to keep your employees in mind. Your team is responsible for keeping customers happy and to ensure they stay with you in the next year. These are the people that can make 2018 your best year yet, so be sure to keep them happy too. Below you’ll find our top tips for showing employees appreciation during the holidays.
Take them out for a nice meal
Whether a company-wide "Worksgiving," or a one-on-one lunch, just getting away from the craziness to enjoy a meal and some work-free conversation is a solid expression of gratitude.
Give them some time off
We know Thanksgiving and Christmas weeks are typically the busiest times of year for small businesses, meaning you’ll need your employees more than ever. While employees are usually both expecting and appreciative of more hours during this season, they can also benefit from the occasional day off. Remember that while business is booming, this is also a time for family. Cut your team a break now and then to go spend quality time with loved ones and they’ll repay you ten times with hard work.
Holiday Happy Hour
Close up early on a Friday and take the team across the street for some cocktails and laughs. Team bonding comes in many forms and Eggnog is one of them. Better yet, decorate the office and surprise them with an early work party!
Host a Fancy Party
Does a party in the office sound too drabb? Think your employees will find the thought of partying in the same place they work all day the kind of idea the Grinch would suggest? Take it elsewhere! Rent a private room at a local restaurant and throw a Real party! An upscale event where employees can bring a guest will make them feel like you truly care about your work family. Throw a party they’ll brag about for months and you’re sure to start off the new year strong.
A Personal Note
If you're going to do holiday cards, then do holiday cards. Don't just do the blanket "thanks for all you do" statement; personalize the message to each employee so it's clear leadership values each individual's contributions. Classic, simple and effective.
Pot Luck or Baking Contest
Either as a complement to a lunch/Happy Hour or as a stand-alone event, invite employees to bring in their best homemade holiday dishes for the chance to win a prize, like a gift card or an extra day off. Make it a blind tasting and give employees tickets to vote anonymously to keep things fair. Tables filled with treats plus a little friendly competition and you've got a low-cost event sure to please your employees.
Work with your employees to come up with a list of charitable organizations to support, and then make time to support them ... during work hours. Bake sales, fun runs and more can get your team feeling good and giving back.
Does this really need an explanation? But on a serious note - this is the time of year when people start to think about their career paths, and where they might have other options. End-of-year bonuses and raises are one of the few ways to show employees that you’re serious about their contribution to your business.