As an employer – whether of 1 or 100 people– it’s easy to feel like paying your staff salary on time is enough, especially in a country like Nigeria. But not really. For one, payment is their right. So, it’s important to appreciate your staff in small but meaningful ways. This goes a long way to help attract and retain talent, as well as boost employee productivity. So, of course, being that today is workers’ day, here are a few ways you can appreciate your staff, not just today but in weeks and months that follow:
Appreciate them on social media
If your company has a social media page, it’s a great idea to appreciate your staff there unless they specifically don’t want their pictures to be put up. If they do something extraordinary or out of the box, you can applaud them on the page. Even if it was a department that achieved something special, you can use a group picture and still mention each name. You may not even have to wait until great achievements are done before posting about them. You can do a weekly or monthly staff showcase and talk about what they do for the company (if it’s not sensitive work) and how important their role is to the company. This will make them feel seen and honoured.
Send them for training/seminars
As a good boss, one of the best ways to appreciate your staff is to make sure they leave better than when they came. You could say personal development is up to the individual but if someone is an asset, it wouldn’t hurt to invest in them. You could get them passes to conferences related to your industry, or sign them up them on a training program, e.g. LinkedIn Learning, where they can access free online courses in their spare time.
Monthly staff awards
Another way to appreciate your staff is to have small parties monthly, maybe every Friday. Where they can come, let their hair down and bond with each other over free food, drinks and music. This encourages better interpersonal relationships which will most likely lead to better teamwork. You can then announce the most outstanding staff of the month and give them a gift. e.g. cash or a gift voucher. If you’re able to you can have different categories e.g. best dressed, most punctual, most sociable, etc.
Celebrate their birthdays
If you can’t afford a cake for every single employee on their birthday— though this would be nice— you could get them a card with well wishes from their colleagues written on it. Or send an email to all staff with the celebrant’s picture, wishing them well. It’s more about the warmth and the thought behind the gesture than the size of it. You could even just send a text; the idea is to make them feel remembered on their day.
Apart from these gestures, imbibing a culture of appreciation into everyday work life is important. Being intentional and making the effort to thank your employees can go a long way.