Employee Celebrations Without Competition


With staff turnover an ever-present issue for convenience stores, keeping the employees you have is just as important as recruiting and hiring the right new people. Taking the time to focus on employee celebrations will increase employee engagement and improve morale.

Make Employee Celebrations Work for Convenience Store Teams

With traditionally smaller teams, convenience store managers face unique challenges. Follow these steps to make sure your employee celebrations have the impact you want them to without creating animosity or competition among your team members.

Focus on personal and professional milestones. It seems like an obvious choice, but recognizing employees’ birthdays, significant life changes, and work anniversaries makes everyone feel good. You can also use these celebrations to highlight the benefits of working at your store. If an employee finishes trade school or college, for example, they may want to share that having a flexible schedule at work helped them achieve this personal accomplishment. Plan ahead, so everyone on the team has an opportunity to sign a card or offer their congratulations.

Align your celebrations with specific goals. Individual celebrations are important when employees have control over their own goals. For example, an employee may be following a custom learning path as an aspiring manager. It makes sense to celebrate when they complete a specific part of their career development training, and that celebration can encourage others who want to move up in your company. Some goals are better celebrated as a team. Say you want to increase memberships in your loyalty program. If you recognize the employee who gets the most sign-ups, you may be alienating employees who work part-time or spend less time behind the register.

Involve your team in deciding what and how to celebrate. Your team will feel more involved and more appreciated when you ask for their input. Ask for – and listen to – employee feedback about which accomplishments and goals should be recognized and what that recognition should look like.

Avoid complacency. Employees could get bored or lose interest if they’re repeatedly working toward the same goal. Celebrate a variety of accomplishments and change team goals frequently so your team will always be constantly improving themselves.

Practice moderation. A little bit goes a long way. If a reward becomes too commonplace, it will lose its meaning. Verbally acknowledge smaller achievements both privately and publicly, depending on the circumstances. While employees enjoy being rewarded, it also means a lot just to know their work is appreciated.

Consider those not being celebrated. It’s hard for people to celebrate their team mates if they feel like they’re working just as hard. When celebrating a single team member, let them have the limelight but also try to put yourself in the shoes of other employees. Watch their reactions, and talk it out if you have concerns.

Ultimately, employee celebrations are meant to build up your team and encourage everyone to work together. When you inspire your employees rather than divide them, everyone wins.

More Insight to Help Celebrate Your Employees

For more tips on how keep employees happy, check out the Culture of Convenience podcast, episode 0024, Loyalty and Retention for Team Members: Stay with Me!

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