Here’s Why It Should ALWAYS be Employee Appreciation Day

Last Friday was Employee Appreciation Day  – officially.

I have to be honest. Though I’m in the employee appreciation business, I get a bit annoyed by this official designation of a “day” for employee appreciation. It reminds me too strongly of the annual performance review. Poor managers use the annual review as an excuse to only give employees feedback, goal setting and career direction once a year.

In the same way, poor managers use Employee Appreciation Day as an excuse to only recognize employees for their exceptional contributions on the one day.

Employee appreciation: It should be a daily activity

My hope has always been that Employee Appreciation Day would serve as:

  1. A reminder that employee appreciation should be a daily activity
  2. An opportunity to highlight and celebrate exceptional achievements as part of the rhythm of ongoing recognition and appreciation
  3. A reason to rethink corporate culture.

That last point may seem out of context for some, yet I believe organization leaders should use the excuse of Employee Appreciation Day to look deeply within the culture of their organization to determine the foundation. Is the culture built on appreciation and recognition, on intimidation and fear, or some other factor?

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Research proves time and again that recognition and appreciation feed employee engagement, which boosts the bottom line. So whether your thinking is altruistic or revenue focused, turning Employee Appreciation Day into a Daily Culture of Appreciation meets your need.

Does employee appreciation happen once a year, or every day, in your organization?

You can find more from Derek Irvine on his Recognize This! blog.

Derek Irvine is senior vice president of client strategy and consulting at Workhuman, where he leads the company’s consulting and analytics divisions. His writing is regularly featured across major HR publications, including HR Magazine, Human Resource Executive, HR Zone, and Workspan.