How to Reward your Team for Free

Employee Engagement: I communicate clearly what behavior is recognized. Then, engage with your team to find out how they want to be recognized.  I recognize employees for doing a great job in all my team’s focus areas. This makes the program more effective because they are clear on what gets recognition and they are involved in choosing the rewards.

Idea 1: I bought a $20 prize wheel on Amazon and allow the best performers to spin it during monthly meetings. I let the team pick the prizes (engagement). The prizes range from a coffee, lunch, and then mostly me doing different parts of their job for them. These are great prizes because they allow me to show them how I want things done, they cost nothing and the team loves being able to boss me around while taking a break.

Idea 2: When I get any new idea to improve efficiency I thank the employee in our group meeting. We discuss and implement good ideas monthly. When an employee has 5 implemented ideas they get an hour off work paid. My team picked this prize but ask your team what would work for them in your focus areas.

Be respectful and always recognize: Be respectful, say please and thank you when appropriate. Every day I am trying to give some feedback constantly. When an employee does a good job, I thank the employee.

Best practice: If the employee does something I want the rest of the group to do, I add it to the meeting agenda and share that accomplishment with the group. Every group meeting, we celebrate success and I recognize individual performers. All those achievement I added to the agenda throughout the month will get talked about and praised.

Final thoughts:

  • I send hand written thank you notes when an employee has been working hard to improve over a short-term period. For example, if they stay late all week trying to get a project done, I will give them a thank you note or may help the out to show my appreciation.
  • Or, at times I may e-mail my boss and let him know what the employee has accomplished.
  • My boss has it on his weekly calendar to recognize someone in the organization, so I try to take advantage of that when warranted.
  • In addition, remember birthdays and anniversaries and all the employee to say thank you.

Hopefully these work for you, but if not please let me know and I can try to help you find something that works. Good luck.

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