Why Experiences

4 Ways That Blueboard Rewards Foster Learning & Development

It’s Monday, 1 pm. Your Senior Product Manager, Eli, is in yet another company-mandated learning and development (L&D) workshop. He’s bored out of his mind because the topic of this session — like most of the others — isn’t personally interesting to him and requires him to sit in a stuffy conference room for the next three hours. His anxiety rises as his email count grows in his inbox above 300. This is not how he wanted to start his week.

Now imagine a different world: it’s Monday, and Eli sits down to the usual slew of post-weekend emails and Jira updates. However, one catches his eye. “Eli, your Blueboard reward awaits!” it says. He opens the email to see a congratulatory note for last week’s feature launch (ahead of schedule, NBD), along with a catalog of experiences that will teach him something new, or help him flex his creative muscles: cooking classes, ninja parkour lessons, and more — which Eli gets to pick from as a thank you for his hard work. Welcome to Blueboard, an employee recognition vendor, where employees can experience a whole new approach to personal development!

Traditional L&D incentive programs and LMS’ are often impersonal. Employees are put on the same track, making it challenging to customize and control their future. Not to mention that these scaled programs, such as speakers and moderated workshops, can bear a large expense to companies (with some speakers demanding $20,000+ per gig!) So what if you could put the power of choice in your employee’s hands, and let them experience learning in a completely new way, outside of the office.

That’s exactly our goal at Blueboard: for employees like Eli to invest in a passion he’s been meaning to pursue as a way to not only fuel his personal life, but also to foster new skills that will strengthen his performance and career growth at your company.

Let’s walk through four key examples and employee gift ideas of how Blueboard Employee Rewards create opportunities to inspire, challenge, and grow your employees.

Fuel creative thinking

Creativity is the engine that drives innovation. Your brain, like any muscle, strengthens with practice. Here are a few fun experiences Blueboard offers to inject creativity into your employees’ lives!

Weiping from Guidewire shaking up creative drinks during his bartending class

  • Learn to cook: One of our staple experiences across all markets is a hands-on cooking class. Under the watchful eye of a local chef, your employees will learn the techniques and skills to expand their recipe book while given the space to try, fail, and learn. Plus, it doesn’t hurt that classes usually end by eating the fruits of their labor.
  • Artistic Expression: The heart of all art is creative ambition, and what better way to tap into that spirit than an art class? We offer instruction in a variety of mediums, from painting to photography to creative writing and more! Employees can try their hand at a craft of their choosing and bring back an artistic trophy for their desk.

Build Teamwork and Leadership Skills

Behind every great company is great leadership that understands how to manage talent, strategize for the future, and lead with confidence. Below are a few out-of-the-box experiences to shape our next generation of leaders.

Stefani from Chloe + Isabel challenging herself with guitar lessons

  • Great Escapes: Escape Rooms offer the perfect space to flex leadership and team building skills. Your employee can bring friends, colleagues, or family members to work together to escape a room riddled with clues, puzzles, and tricks before the clock runs out. The most successful teams establish clear roles, communicate openly, and problem solve together.
  • Join the Band: Whether your employee is a young Jimi Hendrix or new to playing music, Blueboard can hook them up with music lessons with talented instructors and other musicians. Nothing requires more leadership and collaboration than creating a new song or jam among other rockers all looking to shred a solo!

Avoid Burnout

Let’s face it: we all feel like we’re running on fumes at times. Whether it’s a heavy workload that takes you away from friends and family or missing out on precious “me-time,” it all takes a toll on your individual performance at work. Blueboard can help employees recharge those batteries with experiences that leave them energized and refreshed.

Johnny from Pure Storage 'chilling' out at his cryotherapy session

  • Relaxation Done Right: From spa days to couples massage classes to meditation retreats, there are plenty of options for the busy professional looking to indulge in some self-care.
  • Stress Relief: Maybe a day at the salon isn’t your employee’s idea of relaxation. In that case, mind if we offer an axe-throwing session or boxing class? How about a “smash room” where they can unleash their fax-machine rage without getting walked out of the office? We offer plenty of fun methods of instant stress relief!
  • Quality Time: There’s nothing that provides perspective like spending quality time with loved ones. Let Blueboard help your employees carve out the space to take the family to the aquarium to feed sharks, or scream at the top of their lungs with best friends at an amusement park. Better yet, pair their reward with an early release or half-day Friday to help fit the reward into their busy schedule.

Face Your Fears

Businessman George Addair once said, “Everything you’ve wanted is on the other side of fear.” We want to help your employees build the skills and confidence to tackle their fears head-on, so why not encourage them to try:

Kathrina from USI about to embrace her fears and fall from the sky

  • Improv Class: While your employee might not be the next Jerry Seinfeld, an improv class led by local comedians can help them build valuable skills, such as on-the-spot improvisation, strengthening cross-functional relationships, and connecting with an audience.
  • The Great Free Fall: While we aren’t going to throw your employee into a pit of spiders, we might just toss them out of a plane! They’ll have the opportunity to face their fear of heights with a safe and secure tandem skydive at 13,000 feet.
  • Personal Fitness: Walking into any gym is a scary experience, let alone by yourself. Inexperienced? Forget about it. Encourage employees to face their fitness apprehensions with the help of Blueboard. We offer 1:1 sessions with personal trainers, as well as other creative ways to get fit and energized like salsa dance, aerial yoga, or flying trapeze classes.

Investing in your employee’s growth in a meaningful way is important, and lends you a competitive advantage during this competitive talent market. It gives them a greater sense of purpose, the energy to conquer new challenges, and form a more positive outlook on life. We’re confident our friend Eli will bound into work on Monday with more energy and feel extra-inspired in his role after an awesome Blueboard experience. This is the positive recognition loop we hope all of our reward recipients find themselves in.

Have any more employee gift ideas for experiences that support employee development goals? Any classes you’ve taken that taught you something new about yourself, or influenced your work output? We’d love to hear them! Be sure to comment below.

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As of March 12, 2024, Blueboard has ceased its operations. To everyone that supported us over the years, thank you. 🙏