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turkeyThanksgiving is the day for giving thanks for many things. But employees need more than a turkey.

It’s a holiday time when we get involved in our own families and shut out the outside world. As a business owner, this is wonderful time to give thanks to your managers and employees.

Being recognized satisfies a basic need that we all have; to be recognized. The holiday season is a perfect time to build and strengthen your relationships with all of your employees. It’s likely your employees spend more time at work than they do at home. You are part of their extended family. The older we get the family we have left in our lives.

This is the season where everyone is on overload and probably worrying about money. Prices continue to rise, and it’s likely your employees are feeling the pinch. In addition, you are probably trying to bring in as much money before the holidays and are wondering if business is going to go cold over the holidays. Your employees are wondering also; especially if they’re on commission.

How can you recognize them?

Spend as much time as you can during the holidays with your employees. Sure you’re the boss and can disappear over the holidays but why not stay and share in some holiday cheer with them. Having a catered dinner or lunch with them will help them celebrate together. You may not be part of their team, but it’s likely they feel close to each other.

Recognize their special efforts and tell each one of them how important they are to you. If there’s a way to give them some time off, why not? When I was in the retail business, we used to give our employees a special holiday dinner, and also celebrate New Year’s Day in the store with holiday cheer. (We rented a piano for the holidays and sang Christmas songs with our customers!)

As a group, why not adopt a charity or a family and give something back. We did several things, one that seemed to be the most enjoyed was to bring presents to the nursing home or collect “Toys for Tots.”

Hold special events for your customers. This is the time to give away mistletoe and small gifts to your customers. You can also have the holiday cheer in your store and invite your favorite customers. If they spend enough time in your store, it’s likely they see you as family. This is a good time for a “Girl’s Night Out” with plenty of vendors selling holidays gifts.

The bottom line, employees are what make your business go ‘round. It’s a good time to remember this. Happy Holidays!

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