If the last year has taught us anything, it’s that relationships matter. How we build into those relationships matters. This is true in our personal lives and in the workplace.

Employee recognition is just that; Building into relationships.

It doesn’t have to be complicated, and it shouldn’t be painful. Still, employee recognition is something that companies often overlook or avoid, dismissing its value. In doing so, they miss an opportunity to strengthen relationships and cultivate loyalty in the workplace. These are two key factors in the productivity and success of the company.

And it makes sense. Recognizing the efforts and achievements of your employees is a driving force of success. Who isn’t encouraged to do better and work harder when your efforts are appreciated?

All too often, companies rely on cash and bonuses to incentivize and reward. While money is appreciated, it doesn’t convey as much meaning as a tangible gift. And it can give the perception you did not put much thought into the recognition or that you don’t appreciate your employees. According to one study, “… This perception results in feelings of anger and resentment, which negatively impact the employee’s demeanor and contribute to an overall unhappy work environment.

The same is true in our personal relationships. If we don’t invest in and show appreciation for our friends and loved ones, our relationships suffer. It’s really this simple in the workplace, but oftentimes it seems harder to show the love.

In our personal lives, building into relationships comes naturally. We spend time with friends and family, people we value. We make the effort to schedule coffee dates, host dinner parties or travel hours for a shared holiday meal. Over time, we build a bond that repays with loyalty.

Showing appreciation in the workplace should have the same effect as it does outside of work. But we need a different approach than how we show appreciation to friends and family.

So, how do we do this? It’s a common misconception that employees prefer gift cards and cash over gifts. In fact, studies show that gifts make a lasting, meaningful impact. While appreciated, cash and gift cards should not replace the opportunities to reward and recognize with a personal gift.

And why is this the case? Because a gift sticks around. Studies show that people are more likely to hold onto a gift, because it’s associated with a memory. A memory that builds into that foundation you are building with your employees. People appreciate cash and gift cards, but they are spent and forgotten.

We’ve established why it’s more beneficial to reward with tangible gifts than cash or gift cards. Here are three opportunities for recognizing your employees:

1. Performance Award Setting standards and rewarding those who meet them is a great opportunity to recognize and motivate.

2. Company Culture Award: What’s your company ethos? Take the opportunity to reward someone who exemplifies your company values.

3. Best Co-worker Award: A fun way to engage the company community while promoting a culture that supports and recognizes one another.

Here are three types of gifts to give:

1. Brand Name Items: Whether a Columbia Soft Shell or a Marmot Insulated Puffer Jacket, there are plenty of coveted name brand items to incentivize and reward. Add your company logo for instant advertising.

2. Best Seller: The most popular group of merchandise in the promo world is drinkware. Here are a few best-sellers:


3. Your own company store: Feature a custom website where your employees can order company branded apparel and merchandise. During the holidays or employee appreciation events, you can offer them a stipend to spend on an item of their choice. This gives employees freedom to choose something that is to their liking and style.

Contact us today for more ideas on how to show recognition in your workplace and for specific gift ideas. We would love to help you strengthen your relationships with your employees.

Contact us at:

Email: info@one2onemktg.com

Phone: (952) 567-2750 | Toll Free: (800) 422-5856