This time of year, gratitude is on everyone’s minds. As we move into the holiday season and the year winds to an end, it’s an important time to look back at the challenges and successes of the past months and give thanks to those who supported us.
Expressing gratitude can be especially challenging this year when we are limited in our ability to gather together in person. Read on for our top ways to show appreciation and remain connected despite social distancing.
Showing gratitude to your clients is important any year, but 2020 has especially taught us how much we depend upon each other. Letting your customers know that you value their business and support — especially at a time when they might be struggling or looking for ways to cut costs — is a sure way to earn their loyalty and strengthen your relationship.
There are many ways to show thanks to your customers, even on a minimal budget. Print holiday cards or thank you notes, and if possible, include a short hand-written note. You could even record a video of you or your staff sharing heartfelt holiday wishes — a great option for connecting with customers who haven’t seen you in person (or unobscured by a mask) in almost a year.
Branded custom gifts are also available for just about any budget. From a simple mug, hat, or stationery set to high-end leather goods or tech gadgets, your options for personalized holiday gifts are nearly endless. Whatever you choose, your customers will appreciate the thoughtful gesture.
Building and maintaining company loyalty has been unusually challenging this year, particularly for companies with staff working from home. Communication, recognition, and camaraderie are all difficult to maintain digitally. Many employees have been stretched thin by balancing working from home with childcare or other needs. This is the ideal time to remind your employees that you value them. At a time when it can be more difficult to feel part of a team, giving out branded apparel or other company gifts can be a great reminder that you’re all in it together.
You don’t have to wait for the holidays, either. If you’re hiring new staff remotely, providing them with a box of company swag sends a warm welcome and signals that your organization cares about helping them feel like part of the team.
Typically, throwing a holiday party at the end of the year is the way that most companies show their employees gratitude for a year of hard work. This year, many companies will be looking for alternatives. With a little thought, you can still make your employees feel special and appreciated — while spending much less than you would normally on a venue, catering, open bar, and entertainment.
Holiday parties give your employees an opportunity to interact with one another outside the context of work, so make sure to keep the mood light and offer an activity that will encourage everyone to kick back and relax, and NOT talk about work. You could provide everyone with company branded drink glasses and DIY cocktail kits for a virtual happy hour, or even hold a virtual karaoke party or trivia tournament.
It’s also important to recognize that many people are burnt out on Zoom, especially if your business calls for frequent video chatting. If that’s the case, simply put together thoughtful gifts that people can enjoy on their own, like home spa bundles, personalized wine bottles, or gift certificates for takeout from local restaurants.
No matter what kind of organization you’re part of, people are what make it all possible. Put in a little extra time this year to let them know you appreciate them — it will go a long way!