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Posted on 30 January 2024

7 Ways to Mark Employee Appreciation Day with Meaning

3 minute read

In our emergence from the pandemic, the workplace has faced increasing disconnect – from ‘The Great Resignation’ to ‘The Great Gloom‘, disengagement on a global scale has presented significant challenges for HR leaders to overcome. A fundamental yet undervalued puzzle piece needs replacing in the workplace – the role of human connection. Employees are now often seen as an anonymous, collective entity with their personal power, purpose and value going overlooked – only 45% of employees believe their organisation views them as a person.

With Employee Appreciation Day just around the corner, how can this be leveraged as the cornerstone for change in a landscape where employees need to be better seen, heard and valued for their contribution?

At Rippl, we know good things happen every day in every business. And we know the importance of prioritising a culture of recognition all year round. For employers seeking to launch this in 2024, or considering how to improve their current experience, here are 7 key ways to ensure employee appreciation is authentic, purpose-led and, importantly, permanent.

1. The power of peer to peer. Recognition isn’t just for managers. This Employee Appreciation Day, encourage colleagues to praise, compliment or thank one another for their contribution across all areas, whether that’s role performance, peer support or wider behaviour that’s made a difference. Peer recognition is most powerful when moments both big and small are celebrated and shouldn’t be exclusive only to top performers.

2. Championing recognition from the top down. Ensure senior leaders and managers across the business lead by example and role model recognition for all levels of the business. This includes recognising not only their direct reports but also their peers and superiors. When leaders actively participate in recognition, a ripple effect of appreciation is quickly built across the organisation and emulated by others.

3. Launch internal award nominations. Celebrate all corners of behaviour, performance and employee value, from the best problem solver to the friendliest face on Teams with an internal award nomination campaign. These can be personalised to each and every unique business and celebrate the everyday, enabling colleagues to nominate their peers. If possible, allocate some budget to reward shortlist-ers and winners – whether that’s a lunch voucher, a cash bonus or a token gift.

4. Acknowledge recognition at a group level. Recognition should be agile – and that means celebrating both individual and group triumphs. Has a team in the business performed well recently, or remained resilient in times of uncertainty or in the challenges they’ve faced? Is there a department who deserve a shout-out for their contribution? Just like valuing individuals, group recognitions can be shared at a team, regional or organisational level as well as incorporated into internal award nominations. Planning ahead for Employee Appreciation Day, consider a budget allocation towards group reward to elevate this recognition further – but a simple and personalised ‘thank you’ still goes a long way.

5. Recognise cultural value. Authentic and meaningful appreciation requires outside-the-box thinking. Often, businesses focus only on job role performance and achieved KPIs when employees bring multi-dimensional value to the organisation. This includes how they exemplify the business culture and values in their day-to-day. Recognition should celebrate these examples not only to strengthen the business’ cultural framework, but contextualise its values in every employees’ role so they understand their individual power in embodying these.

6. Highlight existing employee perks. Appreciation shouldn’t solely rely on recognition but be elevated through perks that offer meaningful support to employees’ roles. Employee Appreciation Day is a key opportunity to remind teams of the perks on offer so they can take advantage of these. From wellbeing benefits, to discounts and savings, to holiday purchase schemes and flexible working policies, perks should encompass all areas of the employee experience.

7. Set a future-proof strategy. Employee appreciation isn’t just for the day, but should be a 360 degree initiative in order to attract, maximise and retain the best talent. Appreciation is fundamental to restoring human connection in the workplace and building a culture that stands out in a noisy market. At Rippl, we partner with organisations who demonstrate their commitment to creating a happy and empowered workplace all year round.

Looking to get started? Our Ultimate Guide to Recognition and Reward is a one-stop-shop to design and deliver a strategy with a difference.

Interested in exploring the Rippl effect in launching a culture of recognition with a bespoke blend of engagement features? Grab a coffee and download our Platform Overview Brochure.

Ready to make waves in 2024? Chat to us.

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