Christmas Bonus Ideas

Creating a positive workplace involves plenty of encouragement and occasional rewards for exceptional service or achievement. As Christmas draws closer, you are probably thinking about ways to acknowledge your staff for their efforts throughout the year.
Whilst a cash bonus at Christmas is traditional, it is not the only way to reward your staff.

If your cash flow is a bit tight, you will be pleased to know that research indicates that many people value being given quality time with someone special, or words of appreciation for their efforts, over money or tangible gifts.

This Christmas consider writing a personal note of thanks and appreciation to your most valued staff members and enclose a gift voucher to a restaurant/cafe/movies, whatever might be appropriate to their family circumstances.

Some people are motivated by money (a bonus) – many are not. Motivators tend to fall under one of 4 categories listed below. Here are some suggestions to stimulate your thinking, now and throughout the year.

  1. Quality Time (with their partner/family/colleagues) – e.g. reward with time off to spend with family, finish an hour early for a team celebration. Inviting a senior manager to have a quiet chat with the boss at the end of the work day will be a major incentive for some.
  2. Words of Appreciation – I really appreciate the extra effort you've put in over this busy period – Some folks will prefer a quiet word 1-1, others glow when praise is given publicly.
    To find out which your staff would prefer, download a free questionnaire for them through the link given at the end of this article.
  3. Gifts – financial bonus is just one option. Others include a bottle of wine, a dinner voucher for 2, a book or book voucher. Again, give quietly or publicly depending on their preference and personality.
  4. Helpful Actions. Quiet workers who keep out of the limelight and consistently deliver well in supportive roles can be easily overlooked. Watch for ways to be helpful e.g. Making a cup of tea/coffee for a busy worker.
The key thing is to remember different strokes for different folks. Ask your staff what has been the best bit of positive feedback they've ever had, and keep a file so that when you want to reward or acknowledge them you have their preference to hand.


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