Share the Love
It pays to be really good at employee recognition. Valued employees perform better, are more engaged, offer better customer service and lower turnover. If you want to tap into the power and benefits of engaged workers (and happy coworkers), then you don’t want to miss an easy opportunity to show your team some love.
Valentine’s Day is always a great day to show your staff that you value and appreciate them. You can celebrate with a quick gesture like bringing in breakfast that morning or having lunch catered in. Staff will always be happy to be sent home a little early! If you have a bit more time to invest, try decorating the office with paper hearts and roses. I usually run around the building in my heart suit with a huge bowl of chocolates telling staff how very much I appreciate them. Have fun with it!
10 Ideas to Appreciate Staff & Coworkers for Valentine’s Day
Play Chocolate Cupid
Bring a huge bowl of Hersey’s Hugs and Kisses Mix for Valentine’s Day. It’s a HR-approved way to “hug and kiss” your team.
Be a Daymaker
Come early and put a small vase of flowers on each person’s desk with a note saying, “Thanks for bringing joy to the workplace. Here is a little joy for you.” Try not to let anyone catch you and be sure to put one on your desk too so no one guesses it’s you.
Pay It Forward
Pick a team volunteer project to work on for the day. Spend the day “showing the love” to a nonprofit or local cause as you do volunteer work together. This is one of the easiest ways to connect with your staff in a new way while satisfying their need to do something meaningful for others. If you really want to enhance teamwork, be sure to debrief afterwards about what each member learned about working together as a team.
Handwrite Thank YOUs!
A handwritten note to a staff member thanking them for something specific or some precise value they bring to the team will become a treasured note they will keep and long remember. The key is to make it as specific possible to something unique they do or provide to the office (Check out examples for different personality types.) Thank YOUs go a long way to build relationships and trust.
Pick up a shift that allows that coworker to go to something fun. I know those of you who are single frequently feel put upon to work holidays so your coworkers with family can take off. So those of you with family, try doing this for your single coworkers! If there is a play in town, a great movie premier or new restaurant opening, offer to take that shift so they can go. If one of your co-workers has worked every Friday evening or been the last one to leave the office for the past month, offer to trade with them! Even if they don’t have plans, they will appreciate the recognition.
Be Kind, Be Anonymous
Random acts of kindness give the recipient a wonderful feeling of appreciation and delight, but don’t require too much effort. If your co-worker loves chai tea, make a homemade chai mix for them or buy a box at the grocery store. If your co-worker is a dog person, bring in a box of treats for their four-legged friend or donate a dog adoption fee at Helping Hands in their name. If your co-worker is a soda fan, leave a 6 pack on their desk. The trick is to do it anonymously as a random act of kindness with a note for the recipient to keep it going.
Food, Delicious Food!
Bring in brownies or cookies for the staff meeting. Do you have a health-conscious bunch? Try a plate of veggies with dip or a snack bar with yogurt and toppings like granola, fruit and nuts. Snacks always make meetings more fun.
Do the Dirty Work
Volunteer to do a task that coworker dreads or dislikes. Example: I enjoy, dare I say love, creating PowerPoint presentations, and so I volunteer to make or finish coworker’s PowerPoint’s. It helps them and is fun for me. One of my coworkers loved making spreadsheets, so he would get them started for folks so the formulas were set. Those are a lovely way to maximize one another’s talents and typically improve the overall project.
Share the Love as a Team
Here’s a simple activity to add to your team meeting. Give everyone a piece of blank paper and have each of them write their name at the top of the paper. Then everyone passes their piece of paper to the person to their right. Ask that person to write something they admire, respect, value or appreciate about working with the person named at the top of the page, and then continue to pass it to the right. Continue to pass the papers around until everyone has had an opportunity to write on each paper. When the sheet of paper gets back to the original owner, they have a page of compliments, encouraging thoughts and all-around nice things to keep.
Invest in Your Team
Rev up your team’s team building chops. There are several ways to do this. Plan an offsite retreat for your entire team or do training for your team onsite to help them develop and grow as a team. If you feel comfy as the team leader facilitating these, super! If not, call us as we can help. We offer DiSC assessments, team-building training and leadership coaching, as well as Peter Lencioni’s 5 Behaviors of a Cohesive Team training.
Make Valentine’s Day a great day and show staff the love!