Employee Engagement

Appreciation ideas your staff & the planet will love

Refresh your employee recognition program with eco-friendly acts of gratitude

Highly effective employee recognition programs involve much more than just shoutouts in meetings and generic gift cards. If you have trouble retaining top talent, it's time to move beyond traditional staff appreciation practices and start thanking team members in deeper ways. Acts of gratitude should make your employees feel valued, incentivize them to go the extra mile at work, and create a positive impact on the world. These purpose-filled ideas will foster more meaningful relationships within your company, enrich your overall culture, and inspire gift givers and recipients alike.

Plant a tree on their behalf

Pay tribute to good job performance, a workplace milestone, or any special occasion by planting a tree in honor of an employee through the Priceless Planet Coalition and Mastercard. Recipients will receive a personalized digital message to commemorate the tree planting. The Priceless Planet Coalition aims to preserve the environment by planting 100 million trees in the next five years. Planting a tree may seem like a small act of kindness, but it will benefit your people and the planet for years to come.

Give a gift that gives back

Gift your employees items that are ethically produced and eco-friendly, or that support environmental causes. Purchase t-shirts, sweatshirts, or tote bags from Bonfire to support nonprofits that focus on conservation. Create long-term impact by gifting stylish products from Organic Basics — a portion of the proceeds will support organizations that help fight climate change, restore biodiversity and protect vulnerable communities.

Launch an internal sweepstakes

Show team members appreciation by entering them into an in-house sweepstakes. Winners of the sweepstakes could receive prizes like a duffle bag made from recycled materials, folding electric bike, or sustainably crafted bluetooth speakers. These gifts are more than just fun incentives to boost productivity and collaboration, they are also low impact on the earth.

Make a donation in their honor

Praise star employees by donating to an environmental cause in their honor. Goodworld's eCards are an easy way to show appreciation for big accomplishments, daily wins, and the planet. Choose a predesigned card or upload your own, then customize your message — remember to highlight what the individual did to deserve recognition. Recipients will receive a digital card in their inbox notifying them of the positive impact that was created as a result of their good work.

Send them a subscription or gift box

Surprise employees with a subscription box like Love Goodly, which delivers recycled, sustainable, fair trade, cruelty free, and hand made products to women every other month. Since Love Goodly donates a portion of proceeds to nonprofits like Farm Sanctuary and Paw Works, this gift will keep on giving. Packed with Purpose also offers gift boxes that are perfect for recognizing employee accomplishments and demonstrating your company’s interest in environmental sustainability. Their boxes are filled with unique, eco-friendly, and small-batch products that are shipped in packaging that is made from recycled materials.

Treat them to an organic meal

Nothing shows gratitude like the gift of good food. Show employee appreciation and support the environment by taking your team out to lunch at an organic restaurant. Search through Green Restaurant Association's database to find restaurants in your area that are committed to eco-friendly practices and use locally sourced ingredients to create delicious meals.

Underwrite an online class

Recognize hard workers by gifting them an online course that will expand their knowledge of an interesting subject. Coursera's class on global sustainability is a great opportunity to say thanks and enhance understanding of sustainable business strategies, corporate social responsibility, and corporate philanthropy. Ron Finley, a community activist and self-proclaimed “Gangster Gardener”, teaches how to grow nutritious vegetables in his MasterClass on gardening. Jane Goodall's MasterClass on conservation teaches how to act locally and protect the planet.

Host a fundraising event

Celebrate your team by hosting an event that gives back. Use an auction or peer-to-peer fundraiser to inspire donations to a nonprofit that supports clean energy, forest preservation, or solves climate change. An outdoor gala, dance-a-thon, or 5K run is sure to boost morale by bringing your team together to make a positive impact, and invigorate employees who are passionate about environmental causes.