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Writing a heart-felt thank you note for your hard-working employees

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A sincere thank you note to your employees is a way of acknowledging them for their exceptional performance and hard-work. It’s not a simple office etiquette but has many underlying positives for the organization as well as its employees. Many successful entrepreneurs and CEO’s regularly follow this practice of sending a note of thanks to their best employees.

Why is a “Thank You” note important?

There are several positives of sending a “Thank You” note for hard-working employees. A “Thank you” note not only boosts the morale of the employers but it is also a formal way of appreciating his/her work. It fosters a healthy working relationship between the manager and his team. Another long term effect of a “Thank You” note is that it helps in employee retention. Remember every company values loyal employees and employee satisfaction is the key to long term retention. It’s a simple math, if you invest in your employees they will in return invest in your organization. So, a simple “Thank You” note can uplift the spirits of the employees. And a happy, dedicated team will always perform their best for the company.

In many organizations it is a daily practice that the senior management send “Thank you” notes to employees working hard. Infact, the Human Resources team often push the senior management to dedicate some time to send thank you notes to deserving candidates.

The structure of a thank you note:

– Greet the employee and thank them for their job well done.

– Give details of what the appreciation is for.

– Provide insight into how their efforts have benefited the company.

– Thank them again and instill the belief that they are valued members of the company.

Reasons for Thanking employees:

Recognize the hard work and dedication:

Every employee who puts in a lot of effort and is dedicated to the cause of the company’s growth deserves appreciation. But there are some employees who go above and beyond what is expected of them consistently. It is the duty of the managers and the senior executives to recognize this consistency. Once recognized, their efforts must be appreciated and everyone within the organization must know what they have accomplished. This way the employee’s morale is lifted and it also acts as an inspiration to the rest of the employees.

Example: “On behalf of XYZ company I would like to express our most sincere gratitude and acknowledge the supreme efforts you put into making the project a success. Over the past several years your dedication and hard work has been a source of inspiration to us all.”

Praise Individual Jobs well done:

Employees who perform consistently need to be appreciated. But, employees who performed exceptionally well on a particular job also deserve every ounce of appreciation coming their way. Those jobs they have executed might be very beneficial for the company in the future. Any employee who sees an opportunity to improve company performance and goes all out in fulfilling that duty must be appreciated. The appreciation must include details of the job and how the employee did something different or went beyond the purview of his job description. It could also include what the success of that job would mean to the organization itself in the coming months.

Example: “You did an impressive job with the training module this week. I am certain that the team feels empowered after your training.”

Appreciate Leadership shown:

Appreciating leadership can be top down and bottom up. This means a senior executive might appreciate leadership skills displayed by a junior during a particular project. It also means that a senior executive might deserve to be appreciated for leading the company as a whole during a difficult transition period. In such cases all the employees come together in the appreciation of their leader in the form of survey or a town hall.

Example: “I am impressed with the effort you have put in leading the team’s presentation. A lot of them have appreciated the one-on-one guidance you’ve provided them, especially with the tight timeline.”

Appreciating Sales personnel:

As everyone is aware, Sales is an important department in any company. It brings in money which is pivotal for the smooth running of the company. So, recognizing the company’s best sales team is vital. Not only to boost their morale but also to ensure they are not poached by other companies, because, they did not feel appreciated in the current job.

Example: “I want you to know we are extremely satisfied with your sales report this quarter, and we value all that you do for the company.”

Appreciating employees with a long tenure:

It is very important for any organization to have employees spend a minimum number of years with the company to have a certain balance in operations. Constant chopping and changing of team members doesn’t provide stability to any team. People who stick to a company for a long time offer some niche services like experience, mentoring etc naturally. The wealth of experience they bring with them with regards to the inner workings of an organization can never be replaced. It is very important for organizations to honor these individuals and inspire others to also gain that experience and respect.

Example: “On this occasion of your 15th anniversary with XYZ company I want to personally congratulate you on being a pillar of commitment and an inspiration to a lot of the entire workforce. We genuinely appreciate your loyalty and dedicated years of service to our company.”

Appreciating employees in general:

Every company goes through its own highs and lows. It is expected of people to stick with a company when it is doing very well. It is also important to appreciate everyone for their hard work which made the company successful in the first place. But, it is of paramount importance to recognize employees who stick with a company during its tough period. It not only reaffirms the employee’s belief in the company, but it also gives an opportunity for the senior management to chart a course for a better future. And share their vision with the rest of the organization.

Example: “As another year comes to a close, it’s time to introspect on what we have achieved over the past 12 months. I want to take this opportunity to thank each one of you for all your dedication, commitment, hard work and amazing contributions to this company. They have been instrumental in our progress and success.”

Means of delivering a “Thank you” to your hard-working employees:

Saying Thank You:

Although this is quite obvious but a lot of managers and executives don’t do this very often. Always be ready to appreciate anyone who deserves it, irrespective of how big or small the contribution may have been. One of the main reasons for employees leaving a company is because of lack of appreciation.

Example: “Thank you for stepping up and saving the day in this crucial project! I am glad you are a part of this”

Personal Notes:

A personal note goes a long way in making someone feel special. Consider this option appreciating consistently performed daily actions. A personal note conveys honesty. The note should be personal and brief.

Example: “Your presentation was excellent. Keep it up. “

Team Emails:

If the objective is to appreciate an entire team on their performance then sending a “Thank you” note to the entire team by means of a team email will do the job perfectly. The note should signify the importance of team work and collaboration.

Example: “I would like to congratulate the IT team for the successful migration of this critical Data Centre. This would not have been possible without your untiring efforts working round the clock and coordinating with the global teams at every step of the way. I personally thank you for all your efforts.”

Personal Emails:

Writing a brief personal email appreciating an individual employee for his/her contribution is an excellent way of saying “Thank you”.

Example: “I got off the phone with the client, and they were all praise for your efforts on the call last night. I would like to take this opportunity to say thank you on behalf of the entire leadership team.”

Tokens of appreciation:

In some organizations it is allowed to present hard working employees with small gifts. Another way of saying “thank you” is to give a deserving employee a small personal gift with a note thanking them for their services. These gifts are purely symbolic. They could be individual gifts or intended to be used by the employee’s family.

Examples: Restaurant coupons, Cinema or theater tickets or school supplies for children etc.

Saying Thank you in front of an audience:

Appreciating an employee in a town hall or a staff meeting is a great way to boost the self-esteem of a deserving employee. It also acts as a motivator for others to emulate that employee’s achievements.

It is not always necessary to appreciate only the best employee. Any employee who goes beyond what is expected of him/her and has had a direct or an indirect effect on the company’s growth deserves to be thanked. Ensure that the “Thank you” note in any means or form conveys the gratitude felt for them. Writing a heart-felt note to hard-working employees is a practice that every comp[any should follow.

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