The holidays can be a busy time – both personally and professionally. Not only are you struggling to keep up with work during the busy end-of-the-year “crunch time,” you are probably also trying to balance personal holiday-related errands and travel. With everything that’s going on, how can you possibly be expected to plan — and foot the bill for — an office holiday celebration, too?
Before you decide to forego any sort of holiday celebrations, consider the positive effects it can have on staff morale and engagement. Recognizing employees with a party, gift or holiday bonus is a thoughtful way to show your employees just how much you appreciate all their help. Plus, they’ll come back from the holiday vacation eager and ready to keep working just as hard.
Here are a few things to keep in mind when it comes to recognizing your employees during the holidays.
Celebrate together. Even if you have to hold it at your office, try to have some type of party. If you’re on a tight budget, potlucks are great way to celebrate and bring people together while saving money. (You could even have a contest with prizes for the “best” dish in each category.) Not only will employees appreciate the break from the “daily grind,” encouraging employees to socialize in the workplace can boost engagement, job satisfaction and productivity.
Give a few extra days off around the holidays — or allow employees to work remotely. Your employees will appreciate having the extra time saved from commuting to the office to spend running errands, hanging out with friends and family or simply recharging during the stressful holiday season.
Start early by putting aside a little money each week at the beginning of the year (say, $20) toward a “bonus” fund, so by the time the holidays roll around, you won’t be struggling to come up with some cash to reward your employees during the holidays.
Give a little extra. In addition to a holiday party, consider giving a gift (especially if you can’t give a cash bonus). Your employees will appreciate the thought you put into a gift and it will re-energize them to come back to work in the New Year and give it their all. Gift-giving doesn’t have to break the budget, either. Here are some ideas for cost-effective gifts that go a long way in showing your employees you care:
- Gift cards. Gift cards are a great option that can appeal to a lot of people. Consider Amazon, iTunes, Target or Starbucks.
- Food or beverage gifts. It’s hard to go wrong with food (assuming you’re aware of any allergies your employees have). Treat them to a gift basket, a monthly snack box subscription or a gift certificate to their favorite restaurant.
- Hobby-related gifts. If you know your employees have certain passions outside of work – from cooking to gardening to sketching to gold – consider a gift related to their interests.
- Travel accessories. If you have employees who travel a lot on business, consider giving them something to make their travels a little more comfortable, like a personalized luggage tag, travel pillow travel or mobile electronics charging kit.
How do you celebrate the holidays at your office? Message me at @CBPeteJ