5 Easy, *FREE* Ways To Show Gratitude To Your Team

5 Easy, *FREE* Ways To Show Gratitude To Your Team

Happy (American) Thanksgiving Week!

A great time for me to join the thousands (millions???) of people writing about gratitude.

We’ve shared holiday gift ideas for employees and customers (including free and remote friendly options) before.

Here are fresh, new, hot-from-the-Thanksgiving-oven ideas to show love to your team — whether “team” is employees, family, mentors, friends, or all of the above!

If you’re short on time, money, or both (it’s a startup after all!), here are 5 easy and **FREE** ways to show your appreciation this week — and ANY week!

1. Facilitate A Helpful Intro

For an employee, maybe it’s an intro to mentor or someone in a similar role at another startup. (Also a great way for male leaders to support women!)

For a fellow entrepreneur, a future client.

Investors love intros to founders. (too obvious?? 😜)

Make sure the intro is to someone you personally like and think is awesome!

Bonus points if the intro-ees have a shared interest outside of work.

I never don’t have a good conversation with a fellow running nerd. 🤓

2. Write A LinkedIn Recommendation

No one ever said no to a thoughtful LinkedIn rec!

A sentence or two does the job.

Being proactive (before they ask you) with an employee, customer, or vendor is an incredible move.

Make sure it’s positive without hyperbole. It was SO awkward when I had to remove my glowing review of Sam Bankman-Fried. 😂😂😂

3. Give Public Praise

Even the shyest folks occasionally appreciate a big ole public shout out!

Do it via Slack, a team meeting, or the socials — whatever works with your style and company.

Tie it to a specific project or memorable moment.

Give details on how the person’s strengths or effort impacted the outcome.

The specifics are what make it engaging and special!

4. Craft A Personalized Meme

Nothing says, “I appreciate you” like putting someone’s head on a superhero body.

I’m not even joking!

One of my favorite Rigor moments was when Francis Cordón took a screenshot from a morning check-in and Billy Hoffman turned it into a Slack emoji called the “Kathrynator.”

(A lot of people wear sunglasses to meetings, right?)

THANK YOU, FRANCIS AND BILLY!!! Here is your public shout out!! (See Tip #3)

If you are good at video or use AdPipe, you can up the ante with a fun clip.

Just remember to make it an unequivocally-positive-meme not a possibly-passive-aggressive-snarky-meme!

5. Share Behind-The-Back Compliments

Yes, saying thank you or what you appreciate directly to someone is great.

You know what’s even better?

Sharing something positive that was said about them when they weren’t in the room!

Because there’s no doubt that it was sincere.

And even the most confident folks wonder how they’re perceived.

We made this a “thing” at Rigor when we realized that we rarely gave direct compliments but often sung someone’s praises to others.

We started sharing “behind-the-back” compliments regularly and it was so well received that I continue to do it today.

Certain roles — especially CEOs and founders, but also support reps, engineers, anyone in leadership — hear lots of constructive feedback or grievances without much positive in the mix.

If you hear something good, share it!

What are your favorite simple, no-cost ways to show gratitude???