7 Last-Minute Ideas to Celebrate Employee Appreciation Day

Employee Appreciation Day is in 2 days! If you don’t have anything planned, it’s not too late to show your team how much you value them.

Employee Appreciation Day always comes around the first Friday in March. But we know how quickly that date can sneak up after the New Year hits. That’s why we came up with some last-minute ideas for how to show your employees you value their hard work!

1. Hand Written Notes & eCards

As a leader, write personalized notes expressing your gratitude to each of your direct reports. Highlight specific contributions or qualities that you appreciate about them. You can handwrite notes or send eCards using a recognition platform! Encourage your fellow leaders to do the same.

2. Virtual Appreciation Event

Host a virtual appreciation event via video conference where you can gather your team together to express your thanks. It could be a brief virtual happy hour that ends the workday a little early so everyone can join in. You can also plan an activity like trivia or another game to foster camaraderie.

3. Gift Cards

Purchase gift cards to local restaurants, coffee shops, or online retailers as a token of appreciation. Even just a Visa gift card can do the trick…people love money, after all! Plus, gift cards allow employees to treat themselves to something of their choosing that they enjoy.

4. Extra Time Off

Surprise your employees with the gift of extra time off. It could be a half-day on Friday or, since that might be too last minute, announce an additional day of PTO for later in the year. Giving your team a break to relax and recharge demonstrates that you recognize their hard work and want to support their work-life balance.

5. Team Lunch or Treat Delivery

Arrange for lunch or treats to be delivered to your team’s homes or offices on Employee Appreciation Day. Whether it’s a pizza party, gourmet sandwiches, or a selection of desserts, sharing a meal together creates a sense of connection and celebration.

6. Create a Social Post

Spotlight your employees on your social media pages. Avoid highlighting those that are more private and focus on those that like public recognition. Even better, make posts internally if you have a Moments Feed or something similar. Post photos or shout-outs to recognize the contributions of your direct reports or peers.

7. Wellness & Play

Organize wellness activities such as yoga sessions, meditation workshops, or mindfulness exercises to promote health and well-being. Taking care of your employees’ physical and mental health shows that you value their overall wellness. It is also great for mental health – emphasize the importance of play at work. You can connect with your employees in friendly competitions and help them rejuvenate during the day.

Employee Appreciation Day is an opportunity to express gratitude and recognition for your team’s hard work and dedication. While we believe you should express appreciation for your employees EVERY day, these last-minute ideas can say it more on Friday. Remember, the thought and effort behind the gesture genuinely makes a difference in making your people feel valued and appreciated.