Everyone deserves to feel the love on Valentine’s Day, whether they have someone special by their side or are enjoying the single life. Employers can repurpose Valentine’s Day as a way to show their employees gratitude. Here at Poll Everywhere, we “love” every chance we can find to appreciate our employees and find new and fun ways to increase employee engagement. Employees who feel acknowledged and recognized by their higher-ups are more likely to work harder and stick around longer. So, here are some of our favorite, Valentine’s Day-inspired employee engagement activities you can try at the office.
1. Send valentines to your employees
Even the simplest acts of recognition can be incredibly meaningful to your employees. As Valentine’s Day approaches, take a few minutes to write your employees a short note expressing how much you appreciate their work ethic and all their efforts for the company. Highlight their strengths and let them know how much they are valued by their team. Make sure the Valentines are friendly but also professional and give one to each of your employees to prevent questions of favoritism. To make the experience more special, write your notes on a fun Valentine’s Day card like the kind kiddos give to their classmates.
(Keep reading: Ten ways to streamline your team in 2020)
2. Swap office valentines
Don’t keep all the fun valentines to yourself. To increase employee engagement, invite the rest of your team to participate. Encourage your team members to write and swap valentines among each other. Just be sure to inform everyone that these valentines must be work appropriate. Buy a set of blank Valentine’s Day cards and hand them out to your team members so they can fill them out and sneak them onto the desks of their co-workers. Another great option is to create unique valentines for your employees with Poll Everywhere. It’s easy to do. Just create a poll for each of your employees and invite team members to add their Valentine’s Day messages. See how our Director of People Ops, Thoey Bou, uses Poll Everywhere polls to create fun anniversary and birthday cards for the Poll Everywhere team.
3. Buy everyone lunch
Not everyone gets the bouquet of flowers or the surprise candlelight dinner on Valentine’s Day, but you can make this day special for all your employees by taking them out to lunch or by having some good food delivered to the office. Over a shared lunch, use this opportunity to express your gratitude to your staff and let them know that they are all recognized and appreciated on Valentine’s Day. Even simple gestures like these make a big difference. A study by Globoforce found that workplaces that focus on recognizing employees, including through companywide celebrations “are more likely to establish a sense of trust, belonging and respect among employees.”
4. Hold a personalized Poll Everywhere competition
Reward your employees with a thoughtful and feel-good Poll Everywhere Competition on Valentine’s Day. The week before Valentine’s Day, gather personal information from your employees. For example, ask them where they grew up, what sport they played in high school, and what their favorite movie is. Add in some work facts, like the day they started in the company or their original job title. Create quiz questions and test your employees to see how much they really know about each other. This type of quiz isn’t just a fun break from the office. It can also help your team members learn about each other and provide good ice breakers for the future. Everyone will love learning fun little facts about each other and may even discover surprise commonalities. (Who knew three of your teammates secretly love Cold Play?) Make sure you have a nice little prize for the quiz winner. Most people won’t say no to a tasty box of chocolates!
(Keep reading: 12 tips to get the most from Poll Everywhere Competitions)
5. Put together a Valentine’s Day picture wall
Creating a picture wall is a fun way to celebrate any holiday, and it can be done either at the office or online if you work with a remote team. If you want to create a picture board in the office, hang up a cork board and start posting work-appropriate pictures of your employees, along with cute Valentine’s Day art and notes of appreciation. You can even add Valentine’s Day cards for your employees. If you work with a remote team, create an online picture board. You can do this through your current work platform (for example: create a dedicated Slack channel for Valentine’s Day messages and images) or you can create a private Pinterest page. Add notes and images and invite your team to join in the fun.
(Keep reading: Essential remote team management tips to increase productivity)
6. Gift cards for a romantic dinner
Help your employees celebrate Valentine’s Day right by giving them gift cards to a nice restaurant in town. Now they have no excuse but to take their loved one out in style or to have a fun night out with friends. Gift cards can be an extra thoughtful gift if your employees have been working a lot of overtime recently to complete a project or prepare for an event. No doubt, their spouse or partner wishes to see more of them, and you can help make that happen. Gift cards are also a great choice if you work with a remote team. You’ll just need to do a little extra homework to find great restaurants near each of your remote employees.
Looking for more ways to effectively manage your remote team? Grab a copy of our new ebook, “Improving employee engagement.”
Make Valentine’s Day special for your employees
You can use Valentine’s Day to show your employees that you really care and make it a special day for everyone. When your employees feel seen, heard, and appreciated, they will give you their best effort. Now that’s a true fairytale ending! Learn how Poll Everywhere can help improve employee engagement, gather authentic employee feedback, and scale company culture.