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Seven Ways to Reward Employees without Breaking the Bank (Plus a bonus for when you have funds)

June 1, 2010

The downturn has left many companies short of funds; leaving employee rewards programs in the dust. Yet, ignoring achievements leaves people upset and feeling unappreciated, reducing productivity and employee engagement. Here are seven ways to reward employees for free, plus a bonus for when a little funding trickles through. Enjoy.

Surprise them with an early end to the day: Show your appreciation for all their hard work by giving them a little time off to rest and re-energize. After all, who wouldn’t rather be on holiday?

Bring in treats: Make work a more enjoyable environment with surprise food at break time – candies, ice cream or fresh fruit work wonders. Not only will this reward employees- it could also give them the nourishment they need to boost performance.

Recognise Effort and Creativity: The employee of the month is cliché but it works. Create a method of public recognition for employees, such as a notice board or wall of honour.

Give out Personalised Thank you Notes: This takes only a few minutes, yet is a great recognition. Write a personal note to an employee by hand, referring to them by name and accomplishment, and thanking them for their contribution.

Reward Good Work with Better Tools: Hand out comfort ballpoints or novelty erasers to employees who perform well as a reward for excellent use of materials before.

Special Spaces: Make a special space in the workplace such as a relaxation room and encourage employees to use it. This will give them a place to de-stress and recover their energy.

Take it outside: Do something unique for employees such as taking a meeting outside to a park or patio. Everyone will appreciate the fresh air and your attempt to shake things up.

And when you have Funds for Employee rewards, remember:

Purchase Appliances: Items like kettles, microwaves and fridges may have an upfront initial cost, but in terms of cost per use and employee satisfaction, they have the highest value.

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