Employee Appreciation: The 5 Keys To Running A Successful Awards Night
Time and time again, studies prove that employees that are recognized, appreciated, and rewarded for their hard work are more engaged, productive, and likely to stay in their role. Hosting an employee awards night will boost staff morale and can be an effective team-building strategy. Here are five ways to ensure that the evening is a roaring success:
Choose Your Categories
The first step to planning an awards night is to select the categories that will be recognized. While a gold watch for 25 years of service is a somewhat outdated concept, with the average tenure in a role currently around 4.6 years, giving out tasteful corporate gifts to acknowledge people’s time with the business will still be highly appreciated. For other award categories, consider how you can link each back to your company objectives. If you have been working hard to drive innovation within the business, calling out the best ideas or most successful projects in that area reinforces the importance of that objective in the company and maintains staff focus on that area.
If you are unsure what to give employees as a reward or incentive, the best approach may be to ask! People will appreciate the gesture, and you will be confident that any gift or incentive will be well received. You might offer a night’s stay in a fancy hotel, a voucher for dinner at a fun new restaurant in town, a gift card, a new iPad, a gold watch or tickets to a sporting event. The options are endless.
Make it Personal
To underline the value that the award recipient is delivering to the company, it is a great idea to get their manager or team leader to present the award. This way, they can give kudos to their staff member by talking about the person in more detail and sharing project-specific information. Not only will the recipient feel all warm and fuzzy inside, but it will also give the rest of the employees a fascinating insight into other departments within the company and bring the ceremony to life.
Make it Fun
Don’t have people snoozing in their seats as someone recites a list of names in a monotone voice from a podium at the front of the room. If an awards night is worth doing, it is worth doing well! Think about choosing a theme for the evening, organizing delicious hors d’oeuvres or an entire meal, and having some entertainment like a live band. By making the event fun and engaging, it becomes an added bonus for the team in itself and something that people look forward to instead of finding an excuse not to come along.
Schedule Regular Events
Companies frequently fall down by holding an inaugural awards event and failing to follow it up by regular events afterward. Try to pick a realistic time frame, whether that is a quarterly or annual ceremony, and maintain this regularity. Holding a single evening of celebration, which you don’t repeat is likely to have the opposite impact and demotivate your team, as they will feel that you are prioritizing work output over team morale.
Your team is your company’s greatest asset, so take the time to nurture and appreciate them. Remember, it is much better to invest the time and effort into making your current staff feel valued than to need to train all new employees.