February can be a funny old month.
January might be over, but the hangover from what feels like the longest month of the year can drag on well into the new year. If you’re waking up feeling like 2020 is already starting to drag, don’t worry: you’re not alone!
It’s an inspiring time; designed to empower people to pay forward acts of kindness, and a fantastic way to unite employees while encouraging good deeds. So, it makes perfect sense that a lot of companies want to get involved and start thinking about how they can contribute to their communities as well.
However, it’s a mistake to only think about kindness when this week comes around.
Having a ‘pay it forward’ mentality all year long not only benefits a huge pool of people, it also brings enormous value to the business, especially when it comes to motivating and engaging employees.
"The most important thing to remember is that no gesture is too small, and you never know what difference these actions will be making in people’s lives."
SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE
It’s fair to say that inclusivity is a key part of employee wellbeing, so whether it’s a one-off event or an ongoing campaign, it’s really important to make sure everyone – at all levels – can get involved with the company’s engagement initiatives.
Since staff are far more likely to get on board with something they really care about, a good first step is to find a cause that everyone feels strongly about or is invested in. It’s also essential to let staff take part on an individual level as well. As long everyone’s plans fit in with the company’s culture, there’s no need to put any strict rules in place.
It goes without saying that management need to be completely on board with these activities and take part as well.
Leading from the top will go a long way towards setting the right tone and getting everyone involved in the project. And it doesn’t stop there – by taking part alongside the wider team, it’s easier for leadership to foster an atmosphere of inclusivity and encourage employees to do their best – not only for a one-off event, but all throughout the year.
When it comes to encouraging kindness, there should definitely be a ‘more the merrier’ policy in place.
Whether it’s regularly donating to charity, holding the door open for someone, or saying thanks to a colleague for a mug of tea, there are lots of different options. The most important thing to remember is that no gesture is too small, and you never know what difference these actions will be making in people’s lives.
From spontaneous acts to more considered plans, anything and everything counts. From simply offering some praise, to spending time helping someone figure out a problem, year-round acts of kindness often cost nothing, but can have a huge impact and help to bring employees together for a good cause.
Making these actions achievable on a daily basis also makes it easier to have good deeds run consistently throughout the year, rather than being confined to a single week in February.
"With so many advantages on offer for businesses as well as staff, it makes sense for companies to run a year-long programme of activities rather than limiting it to just one week."
An ongoing venture
Any projects launched during Random Act of Kindness Week should absolutely be applauded and encouraged, but they also need to be part of an ongoing, year-round effort.
It’s hugely motivational for the team to feel part of a truly charitable and kind organisation. Plus, interest in this area is not going away, and will no doubt rise as millennials and Gen Zs become the dominant presence in the workforce.
With so many advantages on offer for businesses as well as staff, it makes sense for companies to run a year-long programme of activities alongside their usual programmes of rewards and recognition, rather than limiting it to just one week.
By appealing to the whole workforce, employees will not only build better relationships with each other, but also generate an inclusive atmosphere that will keep everyone feeling motivated all year round.
MOTIVATED STAFF ARE JUST THE BEGINNING OF A BRILLIANT COMPANY CULTURE...
Random acts of kindness are just a tiny part of positive company culture. And a positive company culture is essential to success, retention and productivity.
Get the full lowdown on how you can nurture a positive company culture by downloading your free employee recognition checklist - just hit the link below to find out more!