Whew. Another uncertain year has passed us by. But the holidays are just around the corner, so we’re almost there.
And while Christmas is certainly a time to celebrate, it is also completely normal to feel overwhelmed. Even in normal circumstances, organizing Christmas festivities can be challenging, let alone when a pandemic is present. To help you offer employee appreciation this Christmas season, whether in person or electronically, we’ve put up a list of 11 suggestions.
Holiday employee recognition is important.
This year, you probably haven’t heard it enough, but the work you put in to help your people is essential. And your planned employee appreciation events over the holidays are no different.
The holidays provide a chance to close the year on a note of thankfulness, community, and hope. Consider messages, greetings, and wishes.
Holiday events help your staff look back on the year, let them know they are appreciated, and celebrate their successes—as well as the fact that we are all surviving the pandemic together. Many of us are still digesting the effects of pandemic isolation, which makes this a particularly lonely time of year. Last year, nearly 1 in 4 Americans were unable to visit friends and relatives during Christmas. And 70% of people said they went through different levels of loneliness throughout the holidays.
Aside from the pandemic, many people lack the opportunity to have a healthy, loving relationship with their families. Even while every person’s situation is unique, having the chance to spend time with a “chosen family”—such as friends and coworkers—can help the holidays feel less lonely and more meaningful.
11 suggestions for Christmas staff gratitude in 2021.
There are six inventive ways to express gratitude to employees in a virtual setting.
You may choose to hold virtual holiday celebrations this year, regardless of whether your company is completely distant or located in a region with a high prevalence of the Delta variation. The following considerations should be made when organizing virtual holiday activities:
Your workforce has been “zoned” out. According to a recent survey, since the pandemic began, 44% of workers reported feeling fatigued after making video calls. We have concentrated on virtual activities that diverge from the typical Zoom happy hour to provide your employees with a mental vacation. Being disappointed is common. Some of your staff may be disappointed when they realize there won’t be any more in-person festivities. Be careful to address their disappointment and provide a more upbeat future in which face-to-face interactions will be feasible.
A holiday activity with an asterisk (*) is one that requires less work and money.
- Set up a more intimate virtual gift exchange.
It’s your standard “Secret Santa” gift exchange, but with more consideration. Participants are required to enter the name of a coworker who is familiar with them. This will be the person the gift-giver contacts to make sure the gifts are special and tailored.
Setting a spending limit and providing pre-paid shipping labels will take care of everything else. To make everything go as smoothly as possible, you can even use an app like Elfster. Encourage your staff to post pictures on the business Slack channel and tag one another after the gift exchange is underway to promote holiday cheer.
- Give your Zoom happy hour a festive spin.
Put a festive spin on your Zoom chats to break up the monotonous online happy hour. The secret is to choose a project that complements the culture of your business. Maybe you should have a party with sparkly sweaters. Or maybe your staff would prefer a drag show with a festive theme. Holiday-themed cooking workshops are frequently a tremendous hit if you work in a place where there are lots of foodies.
- Spread the goodwill with a portable gift box.
Make a list of everyone who is interested in taking part and arrange them geographically. Employees who are located along the East Coast, for instance, can be grouped together. Send one member of each group a present box with decorations, glistening lights, and wrapping paper so they can brighten up their home workstations.
To encourage a “pay it forward” effect, ask the first group of receivers to replenish the box with fresh treats and pass it on to the following staff. Set a spending cap and make sure to include pre-paid labels in each package. This is yet another fantastic practice to promote communication inside your workplace.
- Assemble an organization-wide holiday playlist.
Create an organization-wide Spotify playlist. Any fans of Mariah Carey? Are welcome to add their favorite holiday songs. Your staff can interact over shared musical tastes and experience a sense of community while listening to the playlist they put together. What’s best? You’ll get to explore festive music from diverse countries and places as everyone shares their favs.
- Organize a show-and-tell session on “what is your Christmas tradition?”
Invite people to volunteer to share the holiday customs they observe with their friends, families, or alone at a virtual “show-and-tell” event. Employees can learn more about the various holiday customs that exist through this activity and get to know their coworkers better on a personal level. You might even find a brand-new event to add to your own.
- Add some experience to someone’s (holy)day present.
In the end, nothing compares to giving the gift of an experience. which also happens to be Blueboard’s area of expertise. Your employees can select an immersive present that fits their interests, personalities, and lifestyles when you give the gift of Blueboard to them. What’s best? You and your team will have one less thing to worry about because our committed concierge team will handle all the logistics from beginning to end.
Are you considering memorable experiences for your staff’s holiday gifts? Please make an appointment to discuss your holiday gifting objectives with our staff.
Here are 5 ideas to show your staff you care this Christmas season.
These suggestions are for you if you have made the decision to host in-person events this year. Consider the following when you organize your in-person holiday celebrations:
You put employee safety first. The past two years have been filled with worry for your employees’ health and the health of those around them. They don’t want to stress over it at the office holiday party. As Charlene describes, the pandemic brought so many murky places that made it difficult for workers to maneuver. During your vacation activities, some people might not agree with your strategy. That’s fine too. Giving your staff a choice of holiday activities will allow them to take part in whatever activities they feel most comfortable with. Remember that your events don’t have to be fancy or expensive. Consider one or two lower-cost, lower-effort activities if you lack employees or have a limited budget (and don’t be afraid to blend virtual activities with your in-person ones).
- Host a traditional holiday gathering at Beaches For Surfing.
With a classic, you can hardly go wrong. Of course, it takes a little more effort to organize a holiday party during a pandemic. The following inquiries can help you with your planning process:
Will we mandate immunizations for employees and their guests as well?
What kind of setting will provide our employees with the best sense of security?
Will we mandate that workers wear masks when not consuming food or beverages? Will we need the entertainment and event personnel to wear masks?
Will there be food during the gathering? In that case, how can we reduce risks?
Blueboard has made the decision to mandate vaccines for all of its employees and their guests, as well as the use of masks by event staff. We selected a location with both indoor and outdoor areas and will use passed trays rather than a buffet to reduce the chance of spread.
The announcement of these safety measures as soon as feasible is crucial.
“Communicate your safety procedures in a timely manner to allow staff members to provide input. At Blueboard, we consulted with roughly 20 workers before releasing the rules for the holiday party. We didn’t eliminate any of our safety precautions, but we did add a couple as a result of the feedback we received. Therefore, we as a team made the decision rather than simply the People team.
- Finish the year out with a good time.
Employees should decorate their own desks rather than wrapping one another’s, but only in a fashion that reflects their personal holiday traditions. People can, for instance, play their preferred holiday music, hang the same childhood holiday decorations, or bring in the sweets they always like over the season. After that, have everyone go on a “tour” of one another’s desks to see what each person has decorated them with.
- Go on a tour of the area’s lights.
Encourage local staff to arrange a time to get together and take a drive of areas that go all out for holiday lighting displays. You can either encourage planning (by providing sign-up sheets, assisting people in finding one another, etc.) or you can simply plant the idea and allow your staff takes it from there. It’s a great way for coworkers to discover new places, get to know one another, and create lasting memories. Encourage everyone to take some pictures and spread the happiness.