Original article: Post-holiday blues: How to keep your team motivated by Andrew Johnson, see Director General at the UK Gift Card & Voucher Association (UKGCVA), published on Bdaily on 8th October 2014.
Any employee who enjoys travelling is subject to what is commonly known as the post-holiday blues. Returning to the routine of work and daily life can be difficult and post-holiday blues can often result in workers feeling unmotivated and disolusional.
After the summer holidays and while the evenings are drawing in, keeping staff motivated is more crucial than ever. As such, businesses, both large and small, would do well to incorporate rewards that incentivise and motivate employees in order to boost commitment, confidence and sustained morale across the organisation.
Rewarding staff effectively
Traditional rewards such as chocolates or a ‘bottle of something’ for Christmas certainly get noticed, but can often be underappreciated. Staff members are notably better motivated when they have the ability to choose their reward themselves – perhaps something only for them, something personal.
Due to the variety of personalities in the office, it is important to recognise staff individually with a personalised gift that they will value. Through the appreciation of an individual taste and brand preferences, managers can positively impact their staff’s performance.
A cash bonus has been the more traditional way that firms reward their employees. However cash can become overlooked when arriving months later in a payslip, or when swallowed up in living expenses.
A gift card or voucher avoids this issue and provides added value that gives staff something special to spend only on themselves.
Benefits of gift cards and vouchers
Due to the variety of gift cards and vouchers available now, risks of buying the wrong thing or getting someone something they have already got are instantly reduced. Instead the gesture of the reward is inspiring and motivating. For greater personalisation to each staff member, department store vouchers offer a wide variety of gifts. Foodies can eat out with friends with a meal voucher, and fashionistas can reward themselves on the high street. This makes the voucher a significant treat for the receiver to spend as they wish. Vouchers also offer experiences that can be tailored to the individual’s preference, giving the employee the opportunity to do something special outside work with their friends or families.
Employees often work over-time and can be rewarded with a voucher to help them feel more valued and to enhance their own free time. Vouchers also have the option of being ‘one for all’ or multi-store vouchers, providing an even wider choice.
Ultimately, by taking a fresh approach to rewarding staff, businesses can improve staff loyalty and motivation during the aftermath of summer holidays. This in turn will result in a more stable, successful workplace leading up to Christmas and into the New Year. Tailoring the right gift card to an individual demonstrates genuine gratitude for the work they do and will result in employee satisfaction and a more motivated workforce.
Advantages for staff
Rewarding staff with vouchers and gift cards is easily organised and facilitated. There are options to pre-plan, buy in-store or online, as well as digital methods for a last-minute purchase.