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Employee Recognition: Ideas

Employee recognition can be implemented in various forms. Below, we've listed ideas for employees within the Liberty University community to show appreciation for the work ethic of staff/faculty members.  

Gifts and Awards 

  • Free tickets to Liberty sporting events, theatre tickets, meal swipes, etc.
  • Post a thank you note on an employee’s door.
  • Give special assignments to people who show initiative.
  • Arrange for a team/dept to present the results of its efforts to cabinet-level/President.
  • Establish a place to display memos, posters, photos and so on, recognizing progress towards goals and thanking individual employees for their help.
  • Establish a “Behind the Scenes” award specifically for those whose actions are not usually in the limelight.
  • Have staff vote for top manager, supervisor, employee and rookie of the year.
  • Send a letter to all team members at the conclusion of a project, thanking them for their participation.
  • Write a letter of praise recognizing specific contributions and accomplishments. Send a copy to employee’s HR personnel file.
  • Find out the person’s hobby and buy an appropriate gift.
  • Design a “Stress Support Kit” that includes a stress ball, joke book and other fun/simple aids to stress – or design your own.
  • Give an employee a blue ribbon for achievement.
  • Give flowers to an employee at their home or office as a thank you.

Events and Programs

  • Plan a surprise achievement celebration for an employee or group of employees.
  • Present “State of the Department” reports periodically to your employees acknowledging the work and contributions of individuals and teams.
  • At a monthly staff meeting, recognize your area's Employee of the Month and invite co-workers at the meeting to say why that person is deserving of the award.
  • Ask your boss to attend a meeting with your employees during which you thank individuals and groups for their specific contributions.
  • Start an employee recognition program. Give points for attendance, punctuality, teamwork, etc. Provide gift certificates to employees who reach certain point goals.
  • When you hear a positive remark about someone, repeat it to that person as soon as possible.
  • Call an employee to your office to thank them .
  • Publicly recognize the positive impact on operations of the solutions employees devise for problems.
  • Acknowledge individual achievements by using employee names in status reports.
  • Post a large “celebration calendar” in your work area. Tack on notes of recognition to specific dates.
  • Identify your team's specific areas of interest in job-related skills. Then arrange for them to spend a day with an in-house “expert” to learn more about the topic.
  • Serve ice cream sundaes to all of your employees at the end of a project.
  • Once a year, have a “Staff Appreciation Day” where the managers supply, cook and serve food.
  • Hold informal retreats to foster communication and set goals.
  • Serve popcorn and lemonade on Friday (especially after a particularly hard week).
  • Have weekly breakfasts or lunches with groups of employees.
  • Treat an employee to lunch.
  • Bake/bring a gift (cookies, bread, etc.) for an outstanding employee or team.
  • Send birthday cards to employees’ homes, signed by dean or director.
  • Pick one employee a month to write a thank you note to or verbally thank them, based on their personal recognition language.
  • Allow a salary employee to leave 2 hours early a Friday of their choosing.
  • Allow a salary employee to have an extra 30 minutes to their break for a week.
  • Announce an employee's accomplishment at the next staff meeting & encourage everyone to clap for them.
  • Allow your team to dress casual/wear jeans a specific Friday.
  • Publicly acknowledge the employees that have recently graduated with a degree doing Continuing Education at the next staff meeting or newsletter.
  • Afternoon picnic at a park with team/dept.
  • Themed dress-up day for department & give awards to winners (such as 80s attire, their favorite sports teams, etc).