Given how difficult it is to find and keep great talent, it makes good business sense to find ways to retain our staff. In our last post we discussed ideas for employee retention campaigns. That post only discussed WHAT you might want to give your team members. But equally important is HOW you present your gift of appreciation.

Have you ever received a business gift or card over the holidays that just seemed disingenuous? It was a nice gesture, but you were just one of many that unceremoniously received something in the mail. There was nothing special about it. And the same may be true for an employee gift you received in the past. It lacked HEART.

For an employee retention campaign to REALLY work, it needs to have sentiment and meaning. Here are some ideas for making your campaign extra-special for the recipient:

Combining the token of appreciation with a heartfelt message makes a world of difference. For new hires, mention something personal about yourself or fun about the company that you think they would enjoy. For long-time employees, highlight 2 or 3 things that you really admire about them and that they bring to the team. It shows that you appreciate them, and they are being noticed.

Even something so simple as a pen takes on an air of significance when packaged in a nicely branded box or with a special insert. And don’t forget a card or hand-written note!

When possible, why not make the presentation an event! Gather the team for lunch or even something so simple as a pizza party in the break room. It’s the perfect time to give kudos to the group while everyone is together and relaxed.

For service anniversaries, be sure to sing your team member’s praises to the entire group. (Word of caution: some people HATE getting up in front of a room and being in the spotlight, so gushing about their contributions in a one-on-one setting might be more appropriate. So, send an email to the team noting their accomplishments.)

The goal of a leader is to make a genuine connection with their team members. They say that people don’t leave their jobs – they leave their bosses. So, in order to retain great people, the leader needs to foster a genuine sense of appreciation and teamwork.  If I had a nickel for every time a leader said – oh, my team knows their appreciated. They may know it, but they still need to hear it. So, when it comes to showing appreciation, make it a habit of sharing your gratitude not just on special occasions, but as often as possible!

If you would like help creating an employee retention campaign that incorporates both a token of your appreciation, along with recommendations for the rollout, give us a call!