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Eight Ways to Show Your Employees the Love

Posted: November 26, 2008

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Say, "Thank you." It's so simple, it almost seems silly to mention it, but just telling your employees "Thank you," when they've done a great job will go a long way. Verbal recognition of the work they do will not only keep their morale up, it will increase the mutual respect that exists between the two of you. As a result, they'll not only work hard for you, but they'll stick with you through thick and thin.

Give them inexpensive bonuses. While money is tight, you can't give your employees significant raises or bonuses, but you can show your appreciation with other small, less pricey rewards. A few great options include a gift certificate to a local restaurant or tickets to a show or ball game. Alternately, consider giving them a Friday afternoon off with pay.

Provide them with free meals. The quickest way to your employees' hearts is through their stomachs. Providing a catered lunch once a month or doughnuts in the morning is a great way to keep up employee morale and to say thank you to your employees. Also don't forget to take advantage of birthdays and anniversaries. Celebrate each of them with a small party (that includes cake), and not only will your employees appreciate your recognition of them, but it provides a great opportunity for everyone to get together, mingle and have an enjoyable time at work.

Award them. You might want to a have a better system than Michael's "Dundies" on The Office, but coming up with a way to award great work at your business is a fun way to show your employees that you value their hard work.

Write them a thank-you note. Taking the time to write a short thank-you note to a hardworking employee is always well worth it. Let the note be a nice surprise for them by putting it in their mailbox at work or by mailing it to their home. And make it specific—"Thank you for staying late last Thursday to help clean the treatment rooms" is a lot more powerful than a vague "Thanks for all your hard work!"