Treating Employees to more than a pay check

How do you guys “go above and beyond” to make employees happy?

There’s things that can be bought for them, acts of service, words of encouragement, a pat on the back, What else?

If you’ve been an employee, what’s the most memorable thing an employer did for you?

Said it here before. As a teenager worked our tail off for our employer. All I needed was a “thank you” and/or handshake that day.

Just got “see you Monday”.


Try to recognize them daily by thanking them at the end of the day or just tell him it is a good job something simple. I also buy lunch couple times a month. Basically throughout the day just treat them as I want to be treated. Joke around, have fun get through the day


Ditto on just saying “thank you” and never withholding a compliment when you observe good work being done.


Start of the day, Tell them feedback from the previous day. Perhaps good feedback that the customer gave to you and tell them you appreciate the work.

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Remember -“attaboys” don’t pay the bills. Look for ways to compensate them financially when you can. Two of the main reasons any employee stays are 1) the money is good 2) they see a future for themselves with your company.

Ideally, they are making you money. Don’t hesitate to bounce some back to them.


I don’t have any employees, but the other contractor I worked for (still do occasionally) would buy my lunch on days we had lots of work or nasty jobs. Small gesture, but it means a lot to me.


Good pay and if you do a big job or have a meeting then lunch and beer.


I have just used a temp guy, but I appreciate every time he helps me. I buy lunch and toss $25/$30 his way, depending on the job.


Agree with all the above.When i worked for someone he would always split the tips between myself and another guy from the whole year then throw in the tips from customers during the month of december as well(xmas tips were huge).Always took us out for an evening either before xmas or just after and covered all costs for the night.




Thank you for the feedback!

Do you guys ever say something so much that it loses it’s value?

I’m afraid I might be doing that. I guess I should just try to come up with a list of every positive thing I can think of, and sprinkle in unique compliments here and there.

As far as pay goes. I’m over paying him right now, but am okay with it because of his customer service skills, social skills, and street smarts. He goes back to school in the fall so I won’t have him long term.

Always add something specific about the day or task at hand to add meaning and variety.

Whiskey? My work must not be that stellar because all I got was beer. I’m kidding of course, thank you for the craft beer (I actually prefer it over whiskey) and the pizza.


I wouldn’t over think it, or over do praise as it is worse to sound disingenuous. Praise where praise is deserved. If it calls for reward then so be it, but you also expect a worker to earn their keep. :slight_smile:

Just a thought-but having the attititude that we are ‘over paying’ our good employees is something that they will pick up on. That does not convey appreciation.

Figure it this way - if you pay him 20.00 per hour, that’s pretty good. But if he is really a good employee, you are trying to keep him with you, as opposed to getting out and making three times that on his own. Hopefully, you are making more money with him than you would without. So, you have to ask yourself what will keep him from leaving you to make more money? Most likely the answer is financial.

Commendation and lunches are great, but if you want home to stay - explore your financial options.

Being self employed is what stops them. Paying your own taxes, getting work, the hours and responsibilty is much more and something most the employees don’t want or can’t handle.

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Here’s a good video by Josh Latimer

I pay you too much for whiskey :wink:

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There are some good comments listed.

Personally I struggled with this question for quite a while. I have taken time to talk with my employees, trying to find what they would like as well as other local business owners to find out what they have found. One longtime customer who has a very nice run company, pleasant management staff and production workers gave me some advice…
When an employee bends over backwards and above and beyond for a customer or a customer highly praises them for an amazing customer experience, after explaining why this was so appreciated by the customer and me… I thank them and hand them a gift card to a local restaurant. I give raises regularly, buy meals regularly even have paid vacation for full and part time employees… but it’s funny how different this actually stands out above the rest. I have received more “thank you!” Comments from a gift card than a raise. We just have to keep giving appreciation for the hard work our employees give us and they may just continue to hang in trenches with us :wink: