Happy employees are productive employees.
That's why it's important to keep workers engaged, motivated and happy for high employee retention and optimal business production.
Here are some ways businesses keep employees engaged and motivated during Employee Spirit Month and the rest of the year.
1. Give employees recognition
The easiest and most effective way to boost morale is showing employee appreciation. While not a groundbreaking revelation, it is imperative to a healthy company culture. A great way to do this is periodically giving away company swag, which can be ordered in bulk from sites such as Custom Ink, Pinnacle Promotions and Snappy.
Some types of custom employee swag include the following:
- Reusable water bottles and mugs to reduce waste and promote wellness.
- Sweatshirts or light jackets to keep employees warm in what might be a cold office.
- Backpacks or messenger bags to tote laptops and other materials back and forth to work.
- Bluetooth speakers for employees to use at home while they work remotely.
Employers can also reward hard work, listen to workplace concerns and celebrate important milestones such as anniversaries and birthdays. This goodwill in recognizing and engaging with employees can go a long way toward happy workers and employee retention.
2. Plan an office or team activity
Whether they're playing for gift certificates, company swag such as T-shirts or coffee mugs, or just for a break in the usual workday, team activities can engage -- and often entertain -- employees. It's also important to try to include remote employees as much as possible.
The following are some examples of possible activities:
- Office potluck.
- Team trivia with themes such as TV and movies, Disney, sports and pop culture.
- Secret Santa with the help of sites like Sneaky Santa and Elfster.
- Volunteering as a team or participating in a walk for charity, such as the St. Jude Walk/Run.
- Virtual chocolate tastings with companies like Taza Chocolate.
- Outdoor activities, such as a game of basketball or a ski trip.
- Virtual trips around the world through companies like Heygo.
This is also a great opportunity to showcase company culture on social media. Posts should be handled by a company's social media team to adhere to company social media policy.
3. Challenge employees to enhance performance
Every business requires a certain amount of training. But by providing and paying for further training, a business shows it values and is invested in its employees.
Educational activities that businesses can offer to pay for include the following:
- College course work.
- Certification courses.
- Industry conferences.
This additional training benefits both employees and the businesses they work for.
4. Create a mentoring program
A way to encourage higher performance is by having senior employees act as mentors for junior employees. Junior employees learning from their more experienced peers is the ideal way to learn, as they discover more about their role from someone actively involved in that same role. It also gives juniors the opportunity to further integrate themselves into their team. Mentoring is equally beneficial to the senior employees doing the mentoring, as they can learn valuable coaching skills.
This up-close, one-on-one guidance can be especially helpful for team members with disabilities -- physical, mental or otherwise.
5. Offer incentives for a job well done
Employers should see this an opportunity to cultivate company pride. Incentives should not just provide a temporary goal but rather a sustainable goal that can be met now and outdone later. Incentives can help both employees and the business meet monthly targets.
Incentives can include the following:
- Gift cards.
- Paid time off.
- Employee bonus.
- Free lunch.
Websites such as Awardco, Motivosity and Reward Gateway can help businesses reward and recognize employees while boosting morale.