Company holiday parties and other employee social gatherings are largely being canceled this holiday season due to the pandemic. What can business owners do to show employees appreciation when in-person events are not in the cards?


We asked business owners how they’re thanking employees this holiday season; here’s how they responded:


More paid time off

I am thanking my team by giving them multiple days off. They are getting three paid days off for Thanksgiving, three days for Christmas and three days for New Year’s. We had such a great year, we pivoted through COVID and we made it through. They deserve that time off! 

Trevor Rappleye, CEO, CorporateFilming, Long Beach, California


Virtual holiday party

We’re going to have a lovely virtual holiday party over Zoom that will involve playing online games together. We’re supplying everyone with free copies of certain multiplayer games, as well as sending them personalized stockings and some other holiday cheer. I’m really looking forward to having a happier end to the year and reminding everyone that we’re so grateful to work alongside them all year ’round.

Hosea Chang, COO, Hayden Girls, Los Angeles


Restaurant take-out and donations

I am showing my appreciation to my employees this year by giving them a $50 gift card to Uber Eats. Not only will our employees get a great meal out of it, but we will also be supporting a local restaurant—many of which have been hit hard due to the pandemic. Furthermore, we are making a $100 donation for each employee to the charity of their choice because, after all, the holidays are about giving back. 

Tyler Forte, CEO, Felix Homes, Nashville


Online gift opening

This year we plan on doing a virtual “Secret Santa” with all of our employees and opening gifts via a video call. We plan on doing a randomized name drawing and having employees buy their co-worker a reasonably priced gift, and then we’ll pay to have it shipped to the person they’re buying it for. We are going to do our best to inform the employees when to expect the package, so they don’t open it early.

—Suzanne Pope, COO, Whiterock Locators, Plano, Texas


Gift baskets with a bonus

I will be sending out what we call “baskets of love.” In each basket will be personalized gifts for each employee, along with a gift card and their holiday bonus.

James Boatwright, CEO, Code Galaxy, Austin, Texas


How are you thanking your team this holiday season? Share your insights in the comments section below.

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