4 Tips for Making the Most of Employee Appreciation Day

  • Author: Meghan Stewart

While anytime throughout the year is a great time to show appreciation to your employees, Employee Appreciation Day (March 3, 2023) provides an excellent opportunity to recognize and celebrate your workforce.

The Value of Employee Appreciation

Everyone loves to feel appreciated. And in the current climate of record resignations and layoffs, it’s even more important to do what you can to ensure the employees who remain feel valued.

In our recent Employee Connections Study, we asked over 400 employees to tell us which aspects of the employee experience were most important to them. After pay and benefits, “Being valued for who I really am” ranked highest. This finding suggests that employees desire an employee experience that not only values their contributions, but also who they are as individuals.

Other studies illustrate the value of employee appreciation efforts and how they bring about positive outcomes, including higher employee engagement, performance, and retention. A Bonusly and SurveyMonkey survey revealed that employees who feel appreciated by their company are less likely to leave than those who don’t. Furthermore, Deloitte research found that employee productivity, performance, and engagement were 14 percent higher in organizations that formalized their appreciation with recognition programs.

4 Tips for Celebrating Employee Appreciation Day

There are many ways to show your employees how much you appreciate them besides giving monetary awards and extra time off. To make this year’s Employee Appreciation Day one you and your employees will remember, take the following actions:

1. Bring the team together for meaningful connection

In addition to going bowling, meeting for drinks, or having dinner, you can plan a group activity that aligns with your organization’s culture and history. For example, you can volunteer together in the local community. To mark the event, you can create company-branded swag such as t-shirts, water bottles, or office accessories.

2. Connect with employees one-on-one

Showing appreciation to employees doesn’t always have to be a group exercise. You can also take the time to speak to each direct report and let them know how much they are valued. In each conversation, you can reference specific ways the employee has added value to the team and company. You can also talk about ways you can support each employee in meeting their personal career goals.

3. Recognize on-site and remote employees equally

Whether you have employees working on-site, remotely, or on a hybrid arrangement, you’ll need to ensure all know they are equally valued. Therefore, offer appreciation awards and activities that include all employees, including those who can’t be physically present. Some ways you can show appreciation to employees, regardless of work location, include:

  • Mailing gifts such as snack boxes to employees’ homes
  • Offering volunteer time-off to help employees support their local community
  • Holding virtual team events all employees can attend

4. Keep employee appreciation going year-round

You’ll need to demonstrate appreciation throughout the year for employees to feel truly valued. You can do this by periodically scheduling appreciation events and recognizing special milestones. But you can also show your appreciation in small ways, one-on-one, via email, and in team meetings. Sometimes, a kind word is all it takes to tell someone how much you appreciate having them on the team.

Improve the Employee Experience With More Appreciation

Given the benefits, it’s easy to see why you should consistently recognize your employees. By showing appreciation in ways big and small, you can help employees feel more connected to the organization, their coworkers, and company leaders. 

For more insights to help improve the employee experience and build a more connected workforce, read our latest research report, The 2022 Employee Connections Study.

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