Saying “thank you” is important, but demonstrating how much you appreciate your employees is a far more effective tool. By showing your gratitude, you’ll likely strengthen team bonds, increase productivity and boost staff morale. Here are six ways you can express your employee gratitude.


1. Be available for your team

Being a resource for your team is invaluable. Studies show 92% of highly engaged employees said they feel heard in the workplace. Conversely, 30% of employees who classify themselves as highly disengaged don’t feel their company’s higher-ups are listening.

Employees who feel heard are also more likely to be effective at their jobs, ultimately helping improve productivity.

Being available could be as simple as holding office hours, encouraging employees to directly book meetings with you or even walking around the office to check in on team members.

2. Structure an effective employee rewards program

Most HR experts agree that it costs exponentially more money to replace a dissatisfied employee than it does to properly recognize and reward an existing one—up to twice the departing employee’s annual salary.

Employees who are recognized by supervisors for their contributions are less likely to job hunt in the next 3-6 months and more likely to have a sense of purpose in the workplace.

Effective employee rewards program should include:

  • Clarity and transparency. Everyone in the company should have a clear understanding of eligibility, expectations, reward tracking and distribution.
  • Leadership involvement. Senior team members should set the tone and participate in the program by handing out rewards when the time comes.
  • Peer-to-peer recognition. Encouraging employees to nominate their colleagues for awards can be a great way to boost morale.
  • Opportunities for feedback. Supervisors should welcome feedback and act on it whenever possible.
  • Scope for revision. Rewards programs should adapt to the ever-changing needs of your workforce. Regularly evaluate what’s working, what isn’t and how you can improve. Forming a committee that includes representatives from every level of the organization might help keep things equitable and relevant.

As for the rewards themselves, electronics, streaming subscriptions and individual meal perks are a great starting point. Get input from your team to find out their reward preferences.

3. Recognize employees publicly

Recognizing employees in a group setting demonstrates that you see and value individual contributions. Team members who see a coworker being recognized for going above and beyond are more likely to go above and beyond themselves.

Recognition can be as informal or formal as you prefer. Anything from acknowledging good work during a meeting to an end-of-year award ceremony during a company celebration are examples of ways to recognize your team’s hard work.

4. Take to social media

The average person spends 145 minutes per day on various social media platforms. That’s almost two and a half hours of exposure to funny videos, heartwarming posts and, potentially, company accolades. Use your organization’s social pages to double down on existing recognition efforts like employee of the month awards by posting a profile of the featured employee online.

Post shout-outs for an employee’s birthday or company anniversary, or highlight a team member’s unique hobby or side gig volunteering at the animal shelter.

5. Handwritten thank you notes

Thank-you notes are surprisingly powerful—especially when they’re written by hand rather than typed via email. This simple expression of gratitude acts as recognition for your employees’ contributions and reassures them that you’re aware of their value.

Additionally, you can use these notes to touch base with virtual or hybrid employees you might not currently see in-person.

6. Offer meal perks

One of the best ways leaders can show their gratitude to employees is by rewarding them with food. A Grubhub survey found that 60% of employees equate company-provided food with feeling more valued and appreciated.

Meal benefits might look like:


Expressing employee gratitude can be easier with a Grubhub Corporate Account. By signing up, you’ll have access to perks like individual meal credits and a diverse array of catering and group order options suitable for your hybrid, remote or in-office teams.

For more information, contact us today!