20 Ideas to Celebrate Employee Appreciation Day 2024


February 14, 2024

Taryn Hart

Clock icon

X min

5 min

Here are 20 ways to celebrate Employee Appreciation Day this year (with a free kit!).

Table of Contents

Mark your calendars - Employee Appreciation Day is on Friday, March 1st, 2024, and it isn't just a date on the calendar; it's an important opportunity to shine a spotlight on the remarkable efforts of your dedicated team. While a pat on the back is great any day, use this special occasion to amp up the gratitude.  

What is Employee Appreciation Day?

Employee Appreciation Day serves to honor and value the contributions and efforts of your workforce. The story of Employee Appreciation Day begins in 1995, thanks to Dr. Bob Nelson, a visionary in cultivating cultures of recognition in workplaces around the globe.  

Now a global phenomenon, this day is a powerful reminder of the impact that appreciation can have within any organization. Annually, we mark Employee Appreciation Day on the first Friday of March. In 2024, it falls on March 1st.  

What’s inside your Employee Appreciation Day kit?

It's imperative to mark this day with meaningful activities that resonate with your team, making it a significant and anticipated event in your corporate calendar.

This year, we’ve made prioritizing this day easier with your curated Employee Appreciation Day Kit. Here’s what you’ll find inside:  

  • March Recognition Calendar: why limit the appreciation to just one day? This recognition calendar includes daily prompts for celebrating your team and colleagues all month long.
  • Social Media Assets: you can use these Employee Appreciation Day graphics for your social media posts.  
  • Mingle Bingo: a fun virtual or in-office ice-breaker game to include in your celebrations!

Download your 2024 Employee Appreciation Day Kit.

How to Celebrate Employee Appreciation Day (20 Ideas)

If you’re looking for additional ways to celebrate Employee Appreciation Day, we’ve got you covered.  

Here are some in-office and virtual ideas to celebrate Employee Appreciation Day:

In-Office Celebrations

  1. Office Lunch or Breakfast: Cater a special meal for your team, offering a variety of options to accommodate different dietary preferences.
  1. Award Ceremony: Host a fun award ceremony with unique categories that highlight each employee's special contributions or quirks.
  1. Professional Development Workshops: Arrange for a workshop or a speaker that offers professional growth opportunities.
  1. Wellness Day: Organize a day focused on wellness with activities like group exercise, meditation sessions, or a massage therapist on site.
  1. Team Building Activities: Plan team-building exercises or games that encourage collaboration and fun.
  1. Personalized Gifts: Give out small, personalized gifts or thank-you notes to each employee, acknowledging their specific contributions.
  1. A Day Off: Allow employees to take a much-deserved day off to rest, relax and enjoy their own activities.  
  1. Surprise Entertainment: Hire a musician, comedian, or magician for a surprise performance during the workday.
  1. Extended Breaks: Give employees extra-long breaks or a relaxed workday to enjoy leisure activities.
  1. Charity Work: Organize a volunteer day for a cause important to your team, promoting teamwork and social responsibility.

Virtual Celebrations

  1. Virtual Hangout: Host a virtual party or happy hour with games, music, and casual conversation.
  1. Online Awards Ceremony: Similar to in-office, but done virtually, celebrating achievements and milestones.
  1. E-Gift Cards: Send electronic gift cards as a token of appreciation, offering flexibility and a wide range of options.
  1. Virtual Workshops or Webinars: Provide access to online courses or webinars for professional or personal development.
  1. Home Office Upgrades: Offer a budget for employees to upgrade their home office, improving their work-from-home experience.
  1. Online Fitness Classes: Sponsor online fitness or wellness classes that employees can join from home.
  1. Digital Escape Room or Trivia Night: Organize an online game night with virtual escape rooms or trivia challenges.
  1. Subscription Services: Offer subscriptions to services like streaming platforms, e-books, or meal kits.
  1. Virtual Coffee Breaks: Schedule regular virtual coffee breaks where team members can socialize informally.
  1. Recognition Posts on Social Media: Highlight individual employees or teams on the company’s social media channels, praising their hard work and dedication.

These ideas can help create a memorable and enjoyable Employee Appreciation Day, showing your team how much their efforts are valued.

Year-Round Recognition: The Key to Organizational Success

While Employee Appreciation Day is an important day, ongoing recognition throughout the year is essential for maximizing organizational impact. Tools like Kudos facilitate easy and meaningful recognition, ensuring that every achievement, big or small, is acknowledged. With features like employee milestone celebrations, nomination programs, personalized rewards and pulse surveys, it becomes simple to maintain a culture of appreciation.

To help you stay on top of important dates for employee recognition, our 2024 Celebrations Calendar is a handy resource. It's never too early to start integrating recognition into your company culture, and we're here to assist you when you’re ready!

Stay on top of HR news & trends

Stay on top of HR news & trends

Get the latest HR news and expert insights on how to create a great culture straight to your inbox.

Subscribe Today!Subscribe Today!

About Kudos

Kudos is an employee engagement, culture, and analytics platform, that harnesses the power of peer-to-peer recognition, values reinforcement, and open communication to help organizations boost employee engagement, reduce turnover, improve culture, and drive productivity and performance. Kudos uses unique proprietary methodologies to deliver essential people analytics on culture, performance, equity, and inclusion, providing organizations with deep insights and a clear understanding of their workforce.

Talk to Sales

Employee Engagement Strategy Guide

Your Roadmap for Culture Improvement and Change

Get Your Guide