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10 Tips for Showing Employee Appreciation

Imagine your team happy, productive and loyal to the core. They can’t wait to get to work in the morning. They’re passionate about what they do and are ready to bust it all day.

If it seems like an impossible dream, read on. Because a key ingredient for creating satisfaction at work is super easy to add to your company culture: employee appreciation. When you make a habit of showing your team they’re important, their spirits lift and the atmosphere changes. Why? Because who doesn’t like sincere employee recognition and praise for a job well done!

We get it though—with all the other balls you’re juggling, you may be low on staff appreciation ideas and know-how. No worries! We’ve come up with a list of tips for how you can recognize your team and show them you care so you can let the bragfest begin!

10 Ways to Show Your Team Appreciation

1. Just Do It

The first rule of recognition is simply bother to do it. Make a habit of catching your people doing something right and let them know about it. A sincere compliment sets you apart.

2. Take a Hike

It’s hard to recognize anyone if you don’t step away from your desk. Schedule time to walk around your business and check out what’s happening with your team. If someone is doing a good job, let them know about it.

3. Keep It Real

When handing out praise, make sure it’s sincere. Flattery makes you look manipulative and shows you lack integrity. Also remember, only compliment actions you want repeated.

4. Go Public

When bragging on someone, it’s always better to do it in front of others, especially if it’s somebody the person cares about.  Pour on the praise to family members or a spouse and your team member will be beaming for weeks.

5. Tell Their Friends

Recognition in front of friends and colleagues is almost as powerful as family.  That could be as simple as reading praise reports from customers and peers at your weekly staff meetings so everyone can cheer.

6. Don’t Be Stingy

The person who helps a fellow worker in time of need deserves as much praise as your superstar salesperson. Let them know they are doing an awesome job too.

7. Put It in Writing

One of the most powerful tools in your arsenal is the pen. Send hand-written thank you cards to team members who’ve done well.

8. Surprise Them

The most effective recognition is when someone isn’t expecting it. Catch them off guard and surprise them. An unexpected $50 handshake from you for a job well done? Even better.

9. Wish Them a Happy Birthday

No one is every too old or sophisticated to smile when someone says, “Happy birthday.” Find out your team members birthdays and send them an email with your best wishes. The same should hold true for work anniversaries too.

10. Don’t Break the Bank

Recognition doesn’t have to be expensive. T-shirts, anniversary coins, Starbucks cards or a framed note honoring the person are incredibly effective and the cost is minimal.

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How important is employee appreciation? Extremely, by the looks of these numbers: About 47 million U.S. workers left their job voluntarily in 2021, and their top reasons for leaving weren’t pay or benefits. A whopping 26% said their top reasons for leaving a job were either related to management, the work environment or job factors (aka stress and power struggles). This goes to show people want less strain and more support. They want communication, empowerment and—you might’ve already guessed it—recognition.1

So, take the time to recognize your team members and tell them how important they are to your mission. When you do appreciation and recognition right, everyone reaps the rewards!

If you want to learn more about how to build a team that is happy, productive and successful, check out The EntreLeadership Podcast. You’ll get real leadership insight from small-business expert Dave Ramsey who will inspire you to build a great culture and do work that matters.

Ramsey Solutions

About the author

Ramsey Solutions

Ramsey Solutions has been committed to helping people regain control of their money, build wealth, grow their leadership skills, and enhance their lives through personal development since 1992. Millions of people have used our financial advice through 22 books (including 12 national bestsellers) published by Ramsey Press, as well as two syndicated radio shows and 10 podcasts, which have over 17 million weekly listeners. Learn More.

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