Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Don’t “down-size Christmas” say employers in the know.

I recently read an article by Joanne Chianello in our local paper, The Vancouver Sun, that mentioned a company whose employer hand-wrote 20 notes and personally delivered them to his employees, inviting them all to dinner. I felt compelled to call this company and say, Kudos.

I spoke to Jennifer Cross, the business development manager who mentioned that the company is 40 years old, and has original customers coming in who are now in their 70's. No wonder they have such happy customers- their employees are happy, which reflects in the outstanding customer service provided. As she is quoted in the Vancouver Sun article, "its our job to keep our employees happy and feeling like things are good. We want everyone to feel excited about their job."

The article also quotes Patrick Sullivan, President of Workopolis, saying that it is not about the party, but "it's all about the symbolism," and “what employees appreciate more than a grand gesture is some recognition that they worked hard."

December is just one time of the year to say thanks to your team. I recommend recognizing and rewarding employees throughout the year. It creates a culture of appreciation and a happy, satisfied team. Ongoing recognition, whether a formal program or not, that thanks employees- from public displays of thanks with awards or gifts, to subtle thank yous in the form of emails with a cc to the CEO- goes a long way in helping a company achieve their goals.

Avoid generic recognition items, like dated gold watches or gift cards that people may not redeem. Instead, choose ideas, experiences and items that are directly tied to your corporate culture and mission. This creates a team atmosphere that all are involved and feel truly contributing to goals.

To modern meaningful giving,

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