Behind every project success there’s also an excellent team and though your team may only just be “doing its job”, the difference between doing that job well, compared to averagely or poorly can be the difference between stunning success and major failure. When things work out for the former instead of the latter it’s natural to want to say “thank you team” for pulling out a great win for you and the organization.
Monetary rewards or extra holidays are a standard go-to but on top of those (or instead if one’s budget won’t allow for it) it’s always nice to say thank you team in a memorable way that can be quirky and creative but most of all meaningful. Unfortunately, however, knowing how to say thank you effectively doesn’t come naturally to every manager.
Just like some people are awful at picking out presents, knowing how to say thank you can often seem like a natural talent, but it’s actually a matter of practice. That’s why we’ve put together this list of examples of fun and interesting ways to say thank you team when the moment arises.
Spa and wellness day: One of the best things you can give a hardworking team is a day where everything is about their relaxation. Provide massages, mani-pedis, mindfulness sessions and lots of other extras to pamper your high-performers.
Awards ceremony: Like the Oscars except for work, make up unique categories to make sure that everyone gets a prize and has an engraved statue to be proud of.
Live music tickets: Most people enjoy getting to see their favorite acts live, so consider getting a couple of the hottest tickets every month and drawing names from a hat to see who gets to go.
Office comfort: Office ergonomics can actually make a huge difference to long term health, as well as productivity. To say thank you to your staff, consider bringing in an expert to talk about best practice and show your team how to adjust their workspace and equipment to look after their comfort and health.
Collectibles: For a more personalized thank you, take the time to get to know your staff’s interests and hobbies and give them small gifts from that field.
Outdoor adventures: Doubling as a good team bonding exercise, going rock-wall climbing, ziplining or white-water rafting can be a great reward for hard work, especially on a work day.
Escape rooms: Locking a team in a room, having to work hard together to solve puzzles and find their way out is a fun activity that everyone can take part in, giving the team plenty to talk about afterwards.
Voluntary day: Having an informal work day when your team helps out in the community rather than doing a normal day’s work is great for bonding, giving a sense of contributing to the local community and improving the lives of others.
Duvet day: While extra holidays are a standard way to say thank you to your team, half-duvet days or duvet mornings, such as the day after the Super Bowl are underused. Give staff the gift of being able to book a few extra hours in bed in the morning on certain days.
Name day: Instead of birthdays which can get awkward and feel forced, give everyone one day that’s all about them. Clap them into work, give them a crown and allow them to make a few changes around the place.
Comic book or Library day: Getting to chill out with a favorite book or comic can really ease one’s stress so invite a travelling library to set up in the office for a while.
Personalized stationery orders: There’s a strange joy in getting stationery with our own name on it. Allow your staff to make upgraded and personalized orders.
Background music: Especially if having to work late on a winter’s evening, having a live soloist play some Chet Baker softly in the background can set a relaxed and happy mood around your workplace.
Classic “Afternoon Tea”: With the popularity of The Crown and Downton Abbey, why not get in a proper, silver service, British afternoon tea, with cucumber sandwiches (or something nice) and trays of cakes for lunch?
Valet service: If car use is common among your team, hire in a valet service to clean their vehicles inside and out while they work.
Flowers in the office: Not an obvious perk but, allergies aside, it’s hard to find anyone who would object to having a beautiful new bouquet arriving every week to brighten up the office.
Better coffee: Everyone’s a connoisseur nowadays, so show your team how much you appreciate them by investing in the good stuff.
Ice-cream stand: Cooling off during the summer or just an anytime treat, artisan ice cream, served from an old-style ice cream cart for lunch is a fun way to reward your team.
Dunk tank: Especially if you’ve been a tough taskmaster over the course of a project, giving your team the opportunity to throw softballs and dunk you in a pool of water could be exactly what they want.
As any good project manager knows, making sure your team feels appreciated is super important. Hopefully these ideas will help you form a better connection with your team because, as everyone knows, the team that plays together stays together.