RPI has created its 7 Best Practice Standards® based on a plethora of academic research and expert knowledge. These standards were designed to help you create and thoughtfully execute your recognition program. Standard 1 is recognition strategy. Here are ways that you can take your strategy to the next level and recognize your employees in thoughtful, creative ways.
This information is based on a few sources: an article for Inc. written by Sam Caucci, the CEO of 1Huddle (a game-based employee training platform), Snack Nation’s blog, and an article by Forbes.
1) Front parking spot for a week
Who likes a long walk from their car to the office? Almost no one. Mark a parking spot for a particularly engaged employee. Picking an employee every week to park in the special parking spot could be a great way to help you make a habit of recognition.
2) Decoration Budget
Give an employee a budget to redecorate their desk or update some office décor. This one is particularly great for employees who love design and organization.
3) Choice of team lunch
Team lunches are already a great way to recognize employees but giving an employee the choice of what to bring in adds another level to the recognition.
4) Adventure experiences
Studies show that giving employees the opportunity to experience something cool like ziplining, riding a rollercoaster or playing laser tag is much more memorable than cash.
5) Movie morning in the office
Reward a team with a movie in the morning. As a bonus, thank an employee by letting them choose the movie to watch with the team.
6) Prize Wheel
Gather a collection of prizes ranging in value. For example, a $5 gift card, company merchandise or portable chargers up through iPads, nice headphones or a weekend getaway. Create a prize wheel to spin for these prizes at a company celebration.
7) Call their family
During the week, the majority of an employee’s waking hours are spent away from their family. Do not hesitate to pick up the phone and call an employee’s significant other, sibling, parent, or grown child and tell them how much your employee means to you. Even better — invite them to a celebration where the employee is being recognized!
8) Puppy parties
Everyone loves puppies. There are many services (like this one in the Twin Cities) that hire out their puppies for a few hours so your employees can relax and have fun.
9) Bring your dog to work day
Another dog idea — allow an employee to bring their dog into the office. This not only benefits the employee, but also their peers as they get to enjoy having the dog around! It might be best not to grant this to multiple employees on the same day.
10) Meal prep membership
Services like Hello Fresh and Blue Apron deliver kits with all the ingredients to prepare great meals at home. Save your employees time and money by gifting them a meal kit membership.
11) Mail a birthday gift to their house
Keep a list of your employees’ birthdays and mail a small gift to their home. Receiving it in the mail at their home adds a personal touch that they will not forget.
12) A shiny trophy
Give your employee or team an actual trophy to recognize their work. Everyone wants to feel like a champion. This is a cost-effective and fun way to show your employees how much you appreciate them. You can find trophies on Amazon for less than $20.
13) A life-sized cutout
Show off a model employee by ordering a life-sized cardboard cutout of them and placing it in the lobby. This one would bring a lot of laughs.
14) Fix their watch
Recognize your employees by offering to have them bring their watches to you to get them fixed. It seems that most people have a broken watch lying around and fixing them will also help your employees always be on time!
15) Create a sticker of them
Print out stickers of a great employee and hand them out at a meeting.
16) Guest speaker
Bring in an inspiring guest speaker to motivate your employees and give them a well-deserved break!
17) Themed lunches
Take the classic team lunch up a notch by throwing a themed lunch! Plan an Italian lunch with pasta, music and flags. Maybe you want to get even more creative and base a lunch off a movie — Breakfast at Tiffany’s breakfast or Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs meatball lunch.
18) Concert tickets
Pay attention to your employees’ favorite bands and artists and do not hesitate to reward them with some tickets to their favorite show.
19) Hair cuts
Hire a barber for the office for a day and give your employees complimentary haircuts.
20) Food truck lunch
Organize to have a food truck in the parking lot for the afternoon.
To learn more about RPI’s 7 Best Practices click here.
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