[Webinar] Enhancing Employee Engagement Through Holiday Gifting

[Webinar] Enhancing Employee Engagement Through Holiday Gifting

We are back with our Webinar Series – Experts on Employee Experience! 🎉 It is a monthly webinar series where Jade Choy, Epoch's CEO, has conversations with leaders and innovators in the Employee Experience and engagement space.

In case you missed it, here are some key learnings and takeaways from our webinar featuring  Katy Carrigan, CEO of Goody, along with Brittany Fiore, Director of People Operations at Mynd. View the full recording here. Scroll on for notes! 👇

Meet Katy and Brittany 😊🎙️

Katy is the CEO at Goody, a gifting platform that simplifies employee gifting and recognition. With a career spanning over nine years, she has gained valuable experience from companies like Dropbox and Laserfiche. She brings plenty of insights and expertise to Goody, where she is enthusiastic about sharing the patterns and trends she has seen. 

Brittany is a versatile professional who has dipped into various aspects of her field, showcasing expertise in talent management and employee engagement. Her primary dedication is in fostering engagement throughout the entire employee lifecycle. Currently working at Mynd, a hybrid but remote real estate tech company, she brings over 6 years of experience to the conversation. 

What is employee engagement and culture to you?

Having grown up in the tech scene in Boston, Brittany has experienced a disconnect between the level of work and recognition employees receive. So, in the post-COVID work environment, she has been leading teams and redefining the culture based on core values. Recognizing the importance of creating a positive workplace environment, she places emphasis on acknowledging employees and personalizing recognition gifts. 

At Goody, Katy is passionate about exploring diverse ways to support and uplift employees. Recognizing that employee well-being extends beyond the traditional realms, she advocates for a holistic approach. This involves personalized recognition and thoughtful perks like flexible time off, wellness benefits, and even things like a spontaneous Friday off. She shares that trust is key to creating an environment where everyone can be authentic, perform at their best, and genuinely enjoy their work.

Challenges that can be solved with Goody

After winter 2020, with the transition to remote work, Brittany experienced new challenges of expressing gratitude to employees. It was a very difficult process, although the outcomes were well-received by everyone. So, she was looking for a solution to streamline and improve the process for the following year, leading her to Goody. 

Katy highlights the need for companies to ensure that recognition is equitable. Goody is a perfect platform for this since it is programmatic and scalable in nature. This ensures that no one is left out when it comes to acknowledgement, while simultaneously relieving the burden on managers and leaders to individually fulfill this crucial aspect of employee appreciation. 

How gifting is a part of the employee lifecycle 

From the very start of a job, there should be several tangible signs that an employee is being thought of. As time goes on, it becomes about celebrating milestones, and it's a dual approach involving both gift-giving and recognition. With the HRIS integration with Goody, the process of recognizing events is simple, as everything is automatically triggered. For more personal events like weddings, it comes down to the team's culture and individual preferences, ensuring that every meaningful moment is celebrated.

Katy points out that the companies partnering with Goody and boasting the highest engagement scores are the ones that go beyond recognizing just work milestones, they also acknowledge life milestones. This approach goes a long way in showing that individuals are seen as more than just their roles within the company. She also encourages companies to identify their peak periods of activity and respond accordingly to appreciate the hard work of teams. 

Biggest mistakes in gift-giving

Both Brittany and Katy advise against the assumption that everyone wants the same thing. The key is to offer choices that cater to individual preferences, recognizing that not everyone wants the same rewards. By embracing a personalized approach, where employees have the freedom to choose what matters most to them, companies can ensure that recognition is meaningful on an individual level.

Things that can go wrong

Highlighting the importance of planning ahead, Brittany stresses the need to incorporate recognition into your overall plan, even when time is tight. Whether it's part of a larger strategy or a spontaneous gesture, the key is to ensure that recognition is intentional, inclusive, and considerate.

Typical budget ranges for holiday gifting

The typical budget ranges for employee gifts vary, with an average of around $100 per person. From there, the trend is upwards with some companies offering more generous budgets, like $350 per person or even higher, ranging from $800 to $1000. 

At Mynd, the budget falls within the range of $150 to $200 per person, with flexibility for creative solutions if working with a tighter budget. Brittany recommends Goody as a resource for getting crafty and making the most of a lower budget, ensuring that thoughtful and personalized recognition is accessible.

There’s no budget, what should we do?

When there's no specific budget in place, Brittany suggests leveraging Goody's customizable cards, which come with a variety of templates. With the ability to send personalized messages, the focus shifts from the dollar amount spent to the thoughtful intent behind the gesture. 

Katy suggests alternative approaches, like gifting employees time back, for example, a company holiday day. Another solution could be incorporating games into the recognition strategy. Sometimes, valuable gifts can be a break from the routine or an experience. 

Connect with us!

Connect with Katy and Brittany on LinkedIn if you want to chat with them directly. Sign up for Epoch’s newsletter to be in the know for our next Experts in Employee Experience webinar and other Employee Experience events!

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