Employee Recognition

The Power Of Employee Recognition During Times Of Separation [Webinar Recap]

Given the changing environment we now live in, what’s important within work and with our people is changing. But something that hasn’t changed is our inherent need to be seen and valued for the work we're producing. That’s why employee recognition is a critical tool for your talent strategy now, more than ever before. To start an open dialogue around this topic, we hosted a webinar featuring members of the Blueboard team, including:

  • Kevin Yip, Co-Founder and COO
  • Michelle Makowski, Head of Experience Curation
  • Shannon Ferguson, Head of People

Check out the full recap below. For more great HR Webinars, stay in touch via our Resources page.

The state of our workplace

We’re living in an unprecedented time that’s changing the way we connect with others. In a matter of weeks, we’ve gone from social congregating to social distancing - a shift that can cause stress, anxiety, and feelings of isolation if left unaddressed. That’s why we need to revisit what’s important within our companies and for our people given the current context.

This shift is leading many companies, including ours, to ask themselves: what can we do to help our employees given these changing circumstances? More specifically, how do you foster a sense of community and wellbeing during these unprecedented times? 

Employee recognition ideas to foster community and wellbeing while working remotely

The Blueboard team has risen to the challenge and is discovering ways to foster community and a sense of wellbeing - even while quarantining at home. We’re sharing a few of our favorite ideas with you below, as well as some great tips from our webinar attendees! 

Creative moments of connection

In lieu of the in-person moments that we used to take for granted in the office, we’re deliberately creating space for our team to connect, laugh, and have new experiences together. We use Slack to generate light-hearted conversation with initiatives like “Question Of the Day.”  We’re also using the power of video calls to stay safe at home with online happy hours, game nights, and dance parties. These gatherings provide much-needed opportunities for relaxation and bonding.

Some of our webinar attendees shared how they’ve been finding creative moments of connection: 

  • Michele: “We are using Zoom and the whiteboard function to play Pictionary in our daily huddles and happy hours.” 
  • Heidi: “DIY bingo - you get points for self-care activities but also getting to know you questions (how long have you been on the team, born in X month, traveled to Y, has kids, has a sibling, etc.)” 
  • Joanna: “Last night we did a virtual trivia night to put a fun spin on virtual happy hours - it was a huge hit!” 

Virtual wellness

Our team loves to push our comfort zones and learn new things. When we transitioned to working from home, several employees jumped at the opportunity to lead brief virtual wellbeing courses for our internal team. We’ve seen a wide range of classes organically surface, and now almost every morning, you’ll find Blueboarders teaching and learning everything from yoga and HIIT to meditation and setting intentions, to caring for houseplants and how to cook a healthy lunch.

Here’s how webinar attendees are practicing wellness at home: 

  • Prudence: “We put together a feel-good playlist with suggestions from our team members and customers!”
  • Dana: “This morning, we had a ‘pamper yourself’ session with face masks while we had our morning check-in call. It was hilarious and fun.” 

Meaningful Employee Recognition Gifts

Finally, it’s more important than ever to recognize your employees who have a lot on their plates and may be under a significant amount of pressure. At Blueboard, we’ve encouraged all of our Managers to make space for employees to share how things are going and to actively acknowledge big and small achievements in daily team stand-ups and our weekly Fri-YAY all-hands meeting. 

We also wanted to continue to deliver on our promise to provide personally rewarding experiences that have a meaningful impact on people’s lives. That’s why we recently introduced two exciting updates at Blueboard:

  • In-Home Experiences. We recently launched our In-Home Experiences Menu, which contains a selection of experiences that empower employees to learn something new (like music lessons, art courses, or language learning), indulge in their passions (cooking lessons or an in-home massage), or connect with themselves or their surrounding community (life coaching, charitable donations, or volunteer experiences). Your employees get to choose the reward that is most meaningful and relevant to them at this moment.

  • Employee Appreciation Hub - We also wanted to give people an easy way to recognize their coworkers, leaders or colleagues for their above and beyond efforts during this time of uncertainty and constant change. So we created the employee appreciation note builder to empower teams to send each other uplifting note of appreciation during these times of separation. And the icing on the cake - each Lift Up submission serves as an entry to receive a Blueboard White Gold reward for you and your recipient! 

While it may be hard to imagine now, our current situation won’t last forever. And we’re sure that everyone is anticipating the return to normal life. When that time comes, Blueboard will have incredible experiences waiting for your employees! Whether they decide to host a paddle boarding party with friends or go on a haunted history experience with their family, we’ll be sure to give them a memorable experience that’s worth the wait. If you’d like to learn more about our In-home experience menu (or our traditional menu of out-in-the-world adventures), connect with our team here.

Stay tuned for more valuable webinars and upcoming events here on our Resources page - stay well, and we can’t wait to see you again online.

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