Forget the traditional cheesecake, we’re talking birthday perks employees actually get excited about. Did you know that more employees would prefer new or additional benefits over a pay raise?
Benefits not only attract employees, they keep them. Even if your company can’t afford catered lunch everyday or flexible schedules all the time, offering such benefits on an employee’s birthday will still make them feel appreciated.
Here are our favorite ways to celebrate birthdays in the office:
Okay, you don’t have to offer a full day off, but you could at least offer the opportunity to come in late, leave early, or work from home.
A recent survey found that 34% of millennial respondents quit their jobs as a result of limited to no work flexibility, and an additional 14% have considered doing so.
Offering flexibility on an employee’s birthday is an excellent way to test the waters of working from home and non-traditional work schedules.
Remember the sheet cake we mentioned earlier? Catered lunch is the modern version of the sheet cake that actually benefits your bottom line. When employees consume a nutritious lunch, their productivity skyrockets by up to 150%, they call in sick less, and enjoying lunch together leads to stronger teams and an increase in collaboration.
Still not convinced? Read 5 Ways You Earn When You Spend on Office Lunch Delivery.
If you’d like to start small, you could buy your employee a coffee on their birthday. That’ll make anyone happy!
Decorate Their Desk
This may be a traditional gag for birthdays, but really, who doesn’t want to walk in to a desk covered in glitter, balloons, and streamers?
Alright, if you work for a more modest company, a card signed by the entire team will suffice. Even a bouquet of flowers. Either way, it’s nice to feel appreciated first thing in the morning.
Gift Cards or Subscriptions
Gift cards tend to be the present of choice by shoppers and receivers as there’s more freedom with what they can be spent on.
Be sure to pay attention to your employee’s interests and avoid a “one gift card fits all” mentality. Is there a neighborhood coffee shop they like to go to? Favorite place to shop? Employees will feel wonderful to know that you pay attention to their out of work interests.
If you would like to make it easier on yourself and find a gift that would make most employees happy, try researching a few subscription options, such as music streaming or to a fascinating industry magazine or helpful health one.
If you decide to go with the music streaming option, you may find a higher employee output from those who do repetitive tasks or work in noisy environments.
Recognize birthdays at a monthly meeting
This is the most cost effective and efficient option on our list as it allows you to recognize multiple birthdays at once.
Instead of just listing off birthdays, however, say a few words about what makes each employee special or their achievements both with your company and in their personal life.
Birthdays are the one-day out of the year that is supposed to be all about each of us. Help your employees feel celebrated with the ideas on our list, or celebrate them year round with benefits they’re really looking for.
Meg is a dreamer, entrepreneur, and homesteader based in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. She loves her cats, feasting, and road trips in her green VW Bug.