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Recognition & Rewards

National Employee Appreciation Day: 9 Fresh Ideas for Celebrating Your Team

While it's a good practice to consistently demonstrate gratitude to your employees throughout the year, Employee Appreciation Day is the perfect time to make an extra-meaningful gesture to show your team how grateful you are for their hard work. Employee Appreciation Day is on March 6th, 2020, and if you're feeling stuck about what to do, here are a few fresh ideas to help you get started.

Send an appreciation note!

Do you have a colleague who has helped your career soar, coached you, saved you in a bind, or who simply makes it way more fun to come to work every day? We've created an appreciation note builder so you can send some warm fuzzies to that special someone at your office.

Send your appreciation note >>

Send a special note to your fave coworkers all week :)


Celebrate Employee Appreciation Day as a team

Demonstrating employee appreciation to the whole office is a great way to encourage bonding and make sure everyone feels included. Check out these creative ways to celebrate Employee Appreciation Day as a team - across both large and small budgets:

  • Host a lively outing: On Employee Appreciation Day, treat your team to an enjoyable activity based on mutual interests. If you have a competitive team, take everyone out for a round of mini golf or trivia. Or, if you have a super collaborative group of employees, have them try their hand at an escape room or group obstacle course. Regardless of the activity, ensure it’s set up to build meaningful connections across your team, and encourage cross-departmental relationships to avoid existing team cliques.
  • Organize a volunteer day: Providing everyone - regardless of team or level - with the opportunity to donate their time to a good cause will help employees build strong social bonds and increase feelings of company loyalty. Not to mention it’s a great way to give back to your local community! Celebrate Employee Appreciation Day while boosting local involvement.
  • Plan a special treat: If you offer catered lunches, spice it up on Employee Appreciation Day. Set up a fondue fountain in the kitchen or book your team’s favorite food truck to swing by the office. For those on smaller budgets, organize a DIY acai bowl station if you have an office that’s all about healthy eating, and encourage teammates to bring in a variety of their favorite topping ingredients.
  • Design a gratitude wall: Create a space for written appreciation for employees. Indulge your creative side at a craft store and bring in supplies to make handwritten cards that managers, leadership, and employees can give to each other. Alternatively, you can hang butcher paper and supply employees with colorful markers to create a public wall for notes of appreciation and shoutouts throughout Employee Appreciation Day. Offer up a prompt for employees to respond to, such as “what are you most thankful for at [Company]?”, or “who has helped you on your journey?”to grow gratitude for those silent heroes who aren’t comfortable with the #humblebrag.

Invest in your employees by encouraging self-care

Self-care isn’t just a buzzword - it’s an important concept that is proven to lead to happier, more engaged employees. Giving your team the time and space to invest in their physical and mental health on Employee Appreciation Day is a great way to show them how much you care. Here are a few employee rewards that encourage self-care:

  • Offer a flexible work day: Surprise your employees with a work from home day - potentially the Monday after Employee Appreciation Day on March 4th. Or, if you’re feeling extra generous, give them the whole day off. Your employees can use the extra time to take care of themselves or spend time with loved ones. One important note: make sure to emphasize that any time off is enforced. This means no emails, Slack messages, or meetings!
  • Sponsor a fitness class: Have an active office? Sponsor their favorite fitness class and allow them to take time away from the office to get their heart rates up. Whether it’s a spin class or martial arts lesson, use this upcoming Employee Appreciation Day to encourage your team’s progress towards their fitness goals.
  • Bring self-care to the office: You can also bring self-care to your employees. Organize on-site chair massage, yoga class, meditation sessions, or healthy cooking classes at the office to make it extra convenient for your team to boost their wellbeing at work and get to know some new teammates. Tight on your Employee Appreciation Day budget? Tap your employee network to see who might have some secret wellness talents and interest to share their passion with the office.
employee appreciation day adventure
Reconnect with family through shared experiences, like hot air balloon rides!

Share appreciation by giving the gift of an experience

At Blueboard, we strongly believe that experiences are the best way to show employee appreciation. Unlike the standard gift card or cash bonus, experiential rewards are memorable, personal, and shareable.

Not to mention that experiential gifts for employees are proven to improve engagement and talent retention rates to help your company succeed over time. You can see how employees rated Blueboard for growing their feelings of appreciation, motivation, and as a tool for retaining top talent here on our blog. Experiential rewards are the perfect idea for Employee Appreciation Day!

Instead of telling you about all the experiential rewards we have in our extensive, hand-curated menu (there are too many great ones to choose from!), we want to show you - we put together this video to showcase some of our favorite #Blueboarding moments - from employees hiking glaciers in Alaska to meeting llamas in Machu Picchu, to taking in some "me time" at the spa. We’ve had the honor of rewarding thousands of employees with Blueboard experiences that helped them challenge their comfort zones, indulge in their passions, or try new things. We’d love to include your team as part of our Blueboard family too.


We hope you and your team have a memorable National Employee Appreciation Day this year. If you have questions about Blueboard or additional ideas on how to demonstrate employee appreciation, we’d love to connect. Feel free to reach out via the Request Demo form, or give us a shout in the Live Chat window at the bottom right corner!

Looking for the best way to reward, recognize and incentivize your top people?

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