20 Best Employee Appreciation Day Gift Ideas For Your Loyal Team Or Workers

Alisha Zoe

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20 Best Employee Appreciation Day Gift Ideas For Your Loyal Team Or Workers

Employee Appreciation Day Gift Ideas For Your Loyal Team Or Workers

Employees work hard day in and day out, playing vital roles in driving your organization’s mission. It’s crucial to recognize and appreciate their value beyond just salary compensation. Employee Appreciation Day, celebrated annually on the first Friday in March, is the perfect occasion to go above and beyond with thoughtful gift giving. 

Small gestures hold big meaning when it comes to boosting morale, loyalty, and motivation. Customized presents that tap into personal interests, inside jokes, or significant career milestones make staff feel appreciated as human beings – not just workers.

This article covers 20 creative, meaningful Employee Appreciation Day gift ideas to help you show gratitude in unique ways. We’ll also recommend specific products from Amazon to enhance certain gift experiences. 

Employee appreciation day gift ideas

1. Custom Name Badge Lanyards  

Most offices require identification badges for employees to access facilities. But the standard issue lanyards given out are often plain, flimsy and impersonal. Consider ordering custom lanyards printed with your company colors, logos, vision statement or motivational mantras. Make sure the lanyard material is durable and high-quality to be worn every day.

Awareness Express offers affordable custom lanyards in bulk with fast turnaround. Provide design files for your artwork and text to be printed directly onto the polyester material. Various colors, clasps and sizes are available.

2. Personalized Labeled Products

We all have favorite snacks, beverages and comfort foods we crave. Imagine your employee’s excitement opening customized products with their name printed right on the label. Perfect for coffee cups, granola bars, flavored lip balm or beer glasses. Include playful taglines like “Janice’s Joy Fuel” or “Mike’s Microbrew”.

Services like Printful and iCustomLabel let you upload designs to print directly onto food labels which adhere to bags or glass bottles. Stick them on their go-to treats or beverages.

3. Office Houseplant Gift

Bringing more greenery into the workplace has been proven to boost focus, air quality and mood. Pick low-maintenance house plants like succulents or pothos and place them in cute ceramic pots or planters matching employees’ decor tastes. Include customized care instructions laminated to reference as needed.

This adorable narwhal ceramic planter is quirky but chic for an appreciation gift. Fill it with a hardy succulent for easy care.

4. Branded Apparel and Accessories 

Employees can become walking billboards and advocates for your brand beyond the office. Gift cozy logo hoodies, company t-shirts, tote bags, water bottles, umbrella or laptop sleeves. Embroider names on the gear so it feels personal. Stick to quality styles they’ll actually want to use versus cheap toss-aways.

Sports packs from Jansport, North Face and Patagonia with subtle corporate logos feel high-end and versatile for workplace accessory wear.   

5. Desk Accessory Upgrades

Zhuzh up employees’ workstations with upgraded essentials like a high-end mouse or keyboard, monitor risers, pegboard organizers, drawer organizers, wireless charging pads or smart lamps. Think functional yet sophisticated tools which can simplify and beautify their daily grind.

Wireless charging mousepads allow seamless charging of devices while still using the mouse on a smooth surface. This one comes with USB slots built right in to gain some desk space.  

Also Read: 30 Best Employee Appreciation Day Ideas From Gifts To Party Celebration Ideas

6. Personalized Milestone Trophy or Award

If it’s an employee’s 5, 10, 15+ year anniversary, get them a trophy or custom award celebrating their loyal tenure of dedicated service. Engrave their name, job title, phrase like “Making Impact Happen” or print the years served. Keep the design chic and modern with minimal tackiness.

This elegant acrylic trophy silhouette comes blank and ready to personalize with laser printing in matte black or colored ink on the geometric shapes.

7. Group Activity Experience  

Put together a fun, offsite or afterwork outing for the team like an escape room challenge, axe throwing, mini golfing, virtual dance party, bowling or a murder mystery dinner. Shared experiences promote camaraderie, collaboration and silly stress relief.

City Pass Explorer discounts let you gift affordable sampler packages for local attractions, sightseeing tours or restaurants to a small group. Employees can split up and enjoy the activity vouchers with their families.

8. Heartfelt Journal Gifts

Buy personal pocket-sized notebooks or journals then take time to write a thoughtful inscription on the inside cover. Express what you admire about that employee and your wishes for their career to keep shining even brighter. Encourage use for jotting down ideas, tracking goals, doodling or practicing mindfulness.

Papier offers digitally printed notebooks with custom text in stylish fonts on the front cover. Have employees’ names and phrases like “You Make It Happen” printed on.

9. Curated Gift Baskets  

For staff who love to cook, indulge in snacks, relax with tea or pamper themselves with luxuries, create themed gift baskets tailored to those interests. Fill containers like picnic baskets, trays or caddies with an assortment of goodies they can use and savor. Include a celebratory note attached.

Hickory Farms sausage and cheese gift baskets offer a sharable savory option. Add crackers, jams and gourmet nuts for a delicious spread.

10. Entertainment Subscriptions  

Give the gift of home entertainment with subscription services for tv, music, video games, publications or audiobooks. Customize boxes with welcome notes explaining genres you picked to suit their tastes. Include how to activate the membership and login details.

You can gift Spotify Premium subscriptions complete with branded gift cards to share in email or physical packages. Choose 1-12 months access.

Also read: Top 10 Employee Appreciation Day Ideas For Remote Workers Or Employees

11. Donation in Their Name

Show you care about causes or values important to employees by making a donation in their name. Give to a meaningful local nonprofit, charity or respected organization aligned with their belief system or passions outside of work. Recognize their humanity beyond just job roles.

TravelingSpoon is a platform providing funds for vetted small cooking schools globally. Gift cards contribute directly to supporting local entrepreneurship in emerging countries.

12. Self Care and Wellness Gifts 

Employee health, creativity and productivity depend heavily on practicing self-compassion and recharging. Curate thoughtful wellness gifts like spa essentials, mindfulness subscriptions, herbal teas, cozy blankets or noise canceling headphones. Pair with encouraging “you deserve to take care of yourself” notes.

Luxury microfiber bathrobes make the recipient feel special, calm and restored. This plush waffle robe by Turquoise comes in many calming color options.

13. Interactive Desk Toys

Working minds require breaks, fidgeting and imagination outlets. Give quirky sculptural or interactive desk toys and games that allow distraction in healthy ways. Kinetic sculptures, puzzle balls, magnetic construction sets or challenging brainteasers let employees flex their dexterity and problem-solving abilities.

This magnetic wooden puzzle set lets you create 3D sculptures of animals, vehicles and even tiny furniture perfectly suited for creative desk tinkering.

14. Upgraded Desk Chair  

Most people sit for long periods which can lead to back pain. Give the gift of ergonomic support through higher quality office chairs. Look for features like adjustable lumbar, plush fabric, headrests and swivel mobility. Help employees work in proper posture and comfort.

This high back leather swivel chair by YAHEETECH has a breathable mesh backrest, adjustable recline, cushioned seat and sturdy chrome base for $159.

15. Catered Lunch Shared Meal

Bring employees together on the special day by providing a catered lunch complete with modern cuisines, local specialties or even food trucks onsite. Consider decorating a break room with festive touches like balloons, flowers or table settings. Schedule time for staff to pause from duties and gather for community feasting.

Check for local favorites delivered by services like DoorDash, UberEats or GrubHub to bring meals right into your workplace. Include customized baked goods from Milk Bar for celebration desserts.

Related Article: 15 Meaningful Employee Appreciation Day Card Ideas

16. Special Edition Snacks

Search for small-batch, limited edition or locally sourced gourmet snack sets that recipients just can’t find everywhere. Think specialty popcorns, jerky, cheeses, truffles or candy bars not available in regular stores. Employees feel like they’ve received rare treats.

Godiva’s Limited Edition 19-piece chocolate truffle gift box offers indulgent flavors like dark chocolate strawberry, milk chocolate hazelnut, and caramel pecan.

17. Productivity Apps or Software

Equip staff with digital tools that can supercharge their efficiency and make daily work feel more effortless. Think subscriptions to apps focused on task management, note taking, cloud storage, healthy habit tracking, mindfulness or coding education. Include printed instructions for setup.

Professional alternatives to the Microsoft Office suite include Dropbox for secure cloud storage and file sharing with coworkers. Purchase custom Dropbox gift cards to share premium membership access.

18. Unique Office Decoration  

Small decorative office trinkets and ornamental desk sculptures can spark positivity. Choose fun figurines, chic desk calendars, frames for workplace photos, colorful organizers, literary-inspired decor or mini sculptures embodying company values or mottos. Personalize where possible with names or inscriptions.

This cute bookend set depicting two winking doggie sculptures adds whimsy to any cubicle or shelf display. Buy multiple sets for an entire team.

19. Practical Upgrade Gifts

Update any outdated essentials with sleek new versions to elevate employees’ daily office experiences. Look for upgraded basics like insulated coffee tumblers, bluetooth speakers, adult coloring books and splendid writing instruments. Choose quality items they’ll enjoy using long-term.

This stainless steel and natural wood tumbler maintains drink temperatures for hours. Engrave names on the side for custom touch.

20. Box of Uplifting Notes

Fill a box or basket with numerous handwritten notes expressing genuine gratitude, support, praise or admiration for each employee in distinct ways. Highlight achievements, skills, perseverance, values and humor you’ve witnessed firsthand. Let them unpack the thoughtful messages over time to boost moods.

These natural Kraft card stock note cards offer a framed white space perfect for personalized messages to print out or handwrite as an affordable bulk option.

Suggested Reading: 10 Employee Appreciation Day Ideas For Small Companies



Q: What are some unique employee appreciation gift ideas?

A: Get creative with personalized gifts reflecting personal tastes like custom lanyards, plantable desktop gifts, branded gear, upgraded office accessories, trophies, curated themed baskets, interactive amusements like desk toys and more. Handwritten notes also add meaningful uniqueness.  

Q: What gifts are best for showing employee gratitude?

A: Focus on recognition of important milestones, achievements and talents. Thoughtful gestures like donations, framed words of praise, subscriptions customized to their interests and self-care focused pampering go a long way in expressing authentic gratitude.

Q: How can I give employee gifts on a budget?

A: Consider more affordable options like small customized accessories, handwritten notes, digital subscription gifts, gourmet snack boxes, or upgraded essentials like tumblers and planners. Even simple yet thoughtful personalized touches make people feel seen and valued.

Final Verdict

Employee Appreciation Day calls for recognition transcending typical job performance and output metrics. The best gifts tap into what makes each individual staff member shine as human beings with dynamic personalities, talents, interests and core values outside of their workplace roles.

Whether you have a big budget or minimal spending flexibility, meaningful gift curation is possible. Customize branded gear, desk accessories, photo frames, decor pieces and apparel with employee names or special messages. Build creative themed gifts tied to their hobbies like baking, snacking or self-care rituals.  

Give experiences for colleagues to bond through local outings and memory-making. Upgrade basics like premium notebooks, chargers or chairs to show you care about comfort and wellness. Consider digital gifts like streaming subscriptions and productivity apps designed to ease their workloads.

Most importantly, take time to include thoughtful handwritten notes in cards or labels expressing gratitude connecting directly to milestones, inside jokes, values, quirks or skills that define each person’s impact and character. Draw inspiration from those qualities rather than generic sentiments. Small touches like personalized snack labels, trophy inscriptions, sketchpad puns or charitable donations in their name hold weight.

When employees feel recognized beyond just productivity, they’ll feel more satisfied, driven and loyal to the company’s future. Investing in unique appreciation gifts sparks morale and motivation to continue pouring their talents into achievements elevating your whole organization.

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Alisha Zoe

I am a professional writer passionate about the workplace. My articles offer insights on business, team building, and corporate culture. I help you create unforgettable work events and celebrations.

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