In this new era of economic hardship, a common question among our clients is “What can we do to improve staff morale without breaking the bank?” This is a good question at any time, but it is especially applicable today because of the large number of companies undergoing force reductions – which have often affected morale. Below is a list of compiled suggestions that you can find helpful for providing your staff with the moral strength they need.
Ideas for Low-Cost Morale Boosters
Simply saying “thank you” doesn’t cost a cent and goes a long way. There are many ways to create gratitude such as:
* Write a thank-you note
* Granted a certificate of gratitude
* Leave a thank you note that this note is placed on the employee’s workplace
* Express your appreciation for the company’s paging system
* Publicly express your gratitude at a company meeting or event
Random Acts of Kindness (similar to the favorite Hidden Santa holiday). Employees who choose to participate choose the name of another participating staff and any hour of the week does little for their chosen person. Some ideas are made by filing their chosen person, answering their phone, bringing them a flower or bringing them a donut and a cup of coffee.
Do a stupid contest like; Ugliest Tie, Silliest Socks, Ugliest Pants or Ugliest Sweater and give prizes to the winners.
There are “Late Day Mondays.” If possible, once a month allow your staff to arrive an hour later on Monday – or leave an hour early on a Friday.
Sponsoring a “Previous Movie.” Once a month (depending on employee schedules), set up a lunch VCR and show a funny movie during lunch. If time is limited, show running on “Seinfeld,” “Fraser,” or other comedies. You can also sign up for staff to bring their favorite movies to share with their co-workers.
Run an “Guess the Baby” contest. Ask the staff to take pictures of the child and post them on the wall. Give a reward (s) to the employee (s) who are more likely to challenge.
Create non-office pools in high profile events like the Oscars, the Superbowl or the NBA Championship.
There is a pot-luck, which encourages employee participation and is cost effective. In addition, there are many variations such as; breakfast or lunch, holiday themes, cuisine from different cultures, color themed foods or a whole lot of luck making.
Set up a “Humor Corner.” Choose an office section as a place for laughter, and encourage employees to post cartoons, jokes, or other humorous material. Purchase disposable cameras and ask employees to randomly take a straightforward shot at each one, and add them to the “Humor Corner.” (Be sure to get the employee permission to photograph before posting.)
Send birthday and / or anniversary cards to employee homes. It is the simple and sweet gesture that reminds employees that they care about them as people.
Take your employee for a cup of coffee or if you manage multiple employees, bring coffee and bagels one morning for the whole group.
Many of the suggestions in high contests and of course, contests should have prizes. Prizes do not need to be detailed and have many low cost prizes, such as:
* A pair of movie tickets
* One or two hours free rest
* Leave an hour early or arrive an hour later
* Provide a long lunch time
* A special parking space for a day, week or month
* Post a photo of the winner (s) on the “Humor Board”
* Printing Reward Certificates
* $ 10.00 gift cards at a local coffee shop, yogurt shop or gas station.
* Flowers or a plant for their table (s)
* Box of chocolates or a jar of candy / mix in the aisle