Small business owners generally don’t have big bucks to retain employees with pricey perks. But never fear—you can reward employees without sacrificing your sanity or your profit. Check out these creative ways to reward employees effectively and affordably:
Rewarding employees by improving their work/life balance
- Provide telecommuting options.
- Devise a flexible schedule plan. Offer a 4-day workweek—some companies allow this type of schedule year-round while others offer it only during the summer months. Also consider allowing flex-scheduling, which allows employees to, for example, adjust their work hours so they start and leave later in the day.
- Plan team-building, morale-boosting activities that take place away from the office.
Rewarding employees by making gestures of gratitude
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- Give an unannounced half-day off on a holiday staffers don’t typically receive time off for, such as New Year’s Eve or President’s Day.
- Provide the opportunity to work on a high-profile project, such as a task force or committee. This is one of the more creative ways to reward employees because it not only gives the employee more visibility within the organization it also provides him or her with valuable work experience.
- Award gift cards to grocery stores or gas stations
- Recognize employee accomplishments publicly. You might publish it in the company newsletter, announce it over the intercom system, or applaud it at a corporate gathering.
- Enter a recognition letter into the employee’s personnel file.
- Host a home-cooked meal for staffers.
- Treat employees and their spouses to a lunch or dinner.
- Be a good leader (this one, of course, is a smart way to retain employees no matter what your budget!)
As a small business owner or manager wondering how to reward employees, don’t fall into the trap of thinking you’re limited by a less-than-ideal budget. Retain your most valuable asset—your employees—by recognizing their hard work and boosting morale. Start finding ways to reward employees.
Can you share any creative ways to reward employees?
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Cori Curtis says
Great ideas Dianne! Managers and HR professionals are always looking for affordable ways to recognize and express appreciation for employees. An important and very low cost way to recognize remains a handwritten thank you note! Employees at Baudville save their cards for years and often display them at their desk. Managers should never forget the power of a handwritten note that is always within their arsenal!