It’s officially the time of year where “Hocus Pocus” seems to play on a loop 24/7. This iconic film sets the tone for the beginning of the holiday season and offers some delightful quips and quotes from the Sanderson sisters. One quote that might speak to some employees is Winifred Sanderson jeering, “Oh look, another glorious morning. Makes me sick!”
If you’ve ever felt this way, take heart in knowing there’s a simple fix, and it comes in the form of altruism. We’ll define altruism here as random acts of kindness, expecting nothing in return, and if Winifred Sanderson would have experienced it for herself, she just might not be so grouchy. For organizations with engagement and recognition programs in place, there often is a resource for exercising altruism readily available at each employee’s fingertips.
Enter the eCard. This handy tool offers several benefits and can maximize discretionary effort in minimal amounts of time when it’s utilized. Sometimes all it takes is a gentle nudge for employees to remember it’s there and a dedicated effort to make sure it’s put into practice.
Here are some of the myriad opportunities for you and your employees to use eCards at different stops along the Career Experience:
Entrance – Along with welcome letters from managers, welcome boxes and other onboarding gestures to help employees feel like they’re going to belong, eCards serve as an excellent opportunity for forming connections with future team members. Knowing a coworker went out of their way to write a short message will go a long way in building a positive culture that breeds productivity.
Celebration – In terms of celebration, we’re referring to personal life events. In a workforce that is ever evolving and focusing more on the work-life blend, acknowledgment of the happenings in a coworker’s personal life can help bridge that gap. Examples of celebrations that could warrant eCards are birthdays, weddings and babies. Even something like completing a race or accomplishing another personal goal could be grounds for eCard acknowledgment.
Appreciation – Anyone who works in the sphere of employee engagement understands the benefits of expressing appreciation. There’s even a holiday named after it. We often do a good job of communicating our appreciation for coworkers in our email dialogue or in-person interactions, but have you ever taken two minutes to log in to your recognition platform and send an eCard to a coworker just because they went above and beyond your expectations? It’s the simplest gesture, but “thank you” and “keep doing what you’re doing” can have such a profound impact on a team member’s day (and ultimately, your organization’s bottom-line).
Recognition – While this is along the same line as celebration and appreciation, for the intent of this acronym, recognition is directed at performance-based milestones. Career events such as anniversaries (and not just the big ones!), promotions or title changes and the completion of significant projects are great opportunities to use eCards for recognition.
Departure – It’s not something anyone in HR wants to think about, but at some point in their Career Experience, your employees may leave your organization. Whether it’s a career change, retirement or other reason, take this chance to express gratitude for the employee’s contributions to your team’s success. It’s one way to ensure separation is on a positive note, in case the employee eventually wants to return or can refer someone else to your organization.
This truly is one tool that has endless possibilities for cultivating a positive work culture, and in many cases, it’s just about setting aside a few minutes to incorporate it into your workday. If eCards are a part of your recognition culture, challenge yourself, and your coworkers, to think outside the box when it comes to sending them. What if each employee developed the habit of sending one eCard a week? Chances are that we’d find out they’re not “just a bunch of hocus pocus!”