HR Consultant - McGeachy Consulting




Posts tagged Employee Engagement
Employee Appreciation Day Formula that Delivers an Excellent Experience

According to the research conducted by Gary Chapman and Paul White the authors of The 5 Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace, people feel appreciated in 5 different categories: Words of Affirmation, Quality Time, Acts of Service, Tangible Gifts and Physical Touch (that last one is not appropriate for the workplace!). Given our workplace climate, we will focus on the first four. As you think about your workplace, showing your appreciation in a variety of forms will be the best way to reach your diverse team.

Employee Appreciation Day Formula --->

food + gift, act of service, or event + handwritten note of appreciation = employees who feel appreciated


  • Lattes

  • Specialty donuts

  • Locally sourced bagels

  • Healthy, delicious, catered lunch

Gift, Act of Service, or Event:

  • Schedule a chair massage therapist to come to your office

  • Car wash (or car wash gift card)

  • Magazine subscription (how about Fast Company, Entrepreneur, Inc.?)

  • A special book

  • Bottle of wine

  • Use chalk on the sidewalk outside your office to draw your appreciation: 'Our team ROCKS!' If your team is large, have a few of your leaders meet you early in the morning to help cover the sidewalk with appreciation of everyone on your team. You could even use alliteration to match the first letter of their first name with an adjective such as: Can-do Carly or Sales Slugger Sam.

Handwritten Note of Appreciation:


Write handwritten notes of appreciation for each person on your team.

Finally, it’s not about how significant your appreciation day events or gifts are, it’s how much love goes into the act of appreciating your team members. Something simple with buckets-full of appreciation can be magnificent.

It's not too to develop an HR Plan for your small business


The absolute joy and relief of having your HR practices planned, tidied up, and rolled out to your workplace is indescribable. Really. Clients who operate without an HR Plan, without an employee handbook or workplace policies, and without a culture manifesto report relief once these things are in place. 

For many small and medium businesses, the only way to ensure that you remain committed to your HR capabilities and people practices is to have an HR Plan. There is no right time in the lifecycle of your company to bolster your HR Capabilities. If you feel like you're too late to this game don't fret. Now is the time, the HR Plan will give you a fresh start at developing your HR practices and investing in the people-side of your business. This plan can be as simple, or complex, as you want to make it. For your ease, we have created a sample for you to use as a baseline.

Small Business HR Plan


Where to start?

Start with the most significant, most impactful items for your workplace. What drives your culture? Start there. What programs have you committed to and what new people practices do you want to implement? Then look at compliance and fit those items into your HR Plan as well (HR Audit, employee handbook development or update, non-harassment or non-discrimination training, etc.).

Besides what’s in the model, are their other items that small businesses often fit into their HR Plan? Yes, I’m glad you asked!

Here is a list of a variety of items you might consider:

  • All employee retreat

  • All employee meeting

  • Leadership team meeting or retreat

  • Quarterly reviews

  • Off-site employee team builder

  • Create a culture manifesto

  • Employee engagement survey (annual or pulse survey)

  • Monthly manager brown bag lunch (with or without a learning topic)

  • Plan for special events (Employee Appreciation Day, Take Your Child to Work Day, Bosses Day)

  • HR audit

  • Employee handbook creation/review

  • Revisit HR policies that impact the workplace culture. For example the ability to recruit top talent (vacation policy, workplace flexibility policy).


When you're ready to benefit from developing your small business HR Plan click here and we will send you a sample HR Planning Calendar.


Most small businesses have to select what’s most important to their workplace from the list above. Pick what’s right for yours, review it with your leadership team, and commit to the plan.

Gain the peace of mind for your small business with a plan to maximize your HR Capabilities and people practices.


Love practical tips for creating an exceptional business? We’ve got loads more in The Exceptional Workplace! We help small business leaders (CEO, Owners, HR, Controllers) cultivate exceptional workplaces through strong HR and people practices. 

Employee Appreciation Day Plans

Life can be hectic, let’s not be plagued by the preparation for Employee Appreciation Day, which will be here in a few short weeks, March 2nd, 2018. Let’s brainstorm some options to help you show big appreciation to your team.

And, if you’re hesitating STOP.

This is about creating culture, helping employees develop a love for your company, giving your team members a reason to tell others about their delightful workplace (hello, instagramable workplace). This is not about you giving more. It’s about you caring about your team.



employee appreciation day

It's not how much we give, but how much love we put into giving.

Mother Teresa



The idea of taking care of those people who are in service to you is such a lovely act of kindness. This, aside from all other acts, can go a long, LONG way. Why not flip things upside down for a bit and serve your team members?

How about a waffle bar with the CEO as the main server? Another spin on this is a nacho bar or a car wash.


Some employees will be overjoyed with a little bit of surprise on this day of appreciation. Take for example a conference room that is filled with balloons, each with a sharpie-written note of appreciation for individual team members, “Charlotte your customer service skills are exquisite. We are lucky to have you!” What fun it is to find your balloon and read your note. Order lunch in and give them a coupon for an hour (or more) of flexibility in their workday in the coming month and you’re all set.

Have a whiteboard in your office? Cover the whiteboard in notes of appreciation for your team. Big, bright words telling them how grateful you are that they are part of your team. The bigger, the more of an impression it will make. Add a dessert buffet to the conference table and a small gift. Well done.


Looking to add to your office perks to attract and retain talent? This is a great day to reveal the additions to your team.

  • Extra holidays - World at Work says that the average business observes 9 paid holidays per year

  • Enriched PTO Plan - Average PTO plans start at 16 days per year for new employees

  • Add a 401k if you don’t already have one

  • Implement a flexible workplace policy

Offer this along with donuts and coffee in the morning and a handwritten note from the team leader and you have a solid employee appreciation day.


Love practical tips for creating an exceptional business? We’ve got loads more in The Exceptional Workplace! We help small business leaders (CEO, Owners, HR, Controllers) cultivate exceptional workplaces through strong HR and people practices.