Celebrating Valentine's Day: Showing love to your employees

Horizontal blog- Showing gratitude for your employees in honor of Valentine's Day
Article by Horizontal Team
Feb 14, 2024
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Valentine's Day, a day traditionally dedicated to expressions of love and affection, isn't just for that special someone in your life. It’s a perfect opportunity to discuss how employers can show appreciation for their employees.

In the spirit of Valentine’s Day, we’ve spoken to our Horizontal employees across the world and asked them what makes them feel valued. Let's explore some meaningful ways to express gratitude towards the heart of any organization – its employees. 

Acknowledge efforts, recognize and reward excellence

First and foremost, acknowledging the hard work and dedication of your employees can go a long way. Take the time to personally thank them for their contributions to the company's success. Whether through a heartfelt email, a handwritten note or a public acknowledgment during a team meeting, let them know their efforts are valued and appreciated.

Nothing says, "I appreciate you," like recognizing and rewarding excellence. Implement a formal employee recognition program where outstanding performance is celebrated and rewarded. Whether through monetary incentives, extra time off or other perks, acknowledging achievements reinforces a culture of appreciation and motivates employees to continue excelling.

At Horizontal, our employee recognition program is called “Raise the Bar.” Every week, team members can nominate other employees at the company if they’ve done something that aligns with our 5 core pillars: collaboration, greater good, integrity, positive energy and hustle. At the end of each quarter, all nominees are put into a drawing for a gift card. 
I feel valued as an employee at Horizontal when people appreciate and validate my efforts. It's also rewarding to see things you've worked on positively impact our team and business. – Kevin Erickson, Regional Vice President, U.S.

Foster a positive work environment 

Creating a positive work environment is essential for fostering camaraderie among employees. Encourage open communication, mutual respect and teamwork. Organize team-building activities and social events to strengthen bonds and boost morale.
I love how inclusive Horizontal is around diversity of thought and the support groups it has to offer. I love our monthly 'Better Together' series as it is a very emotional meeting ... in a good way! – Jeff Seebinger, Regional Vice President, U.S.
I feel valued through autonomy and trust to make decisions and execute tasks within my role. This makes me feel respected and valued for my expertise. – Rachel Enstrom, Sr Director - Global Marketing, Product & Tech, U.S.

Support personal goals

Show love to your employees by supporting their personal goals and aspirations. Whether it's furthering their education, pursuing a passion project or achieving a personal milestone, be a source of encouragement and support. Flexible scheduling, financial assistance or simply offering words of encouragement can make a world of difference in helping employees balance their professional and personal aspirations.
I feel value as an employee at Horizontal Talent when colleagues take the time to say a simple hello and make an effort to get to know me in any small way. – Lauren Kasten, Recruiter, U.S. 
When colleagues and especially leadership show an interest in my personal life beyond the day-to-day grind of work, that means a lot. – Mandy Hay, Talent Aquisition Partner, U.S. 
As a new employee, everyone has been so welcoming and supportive as I am getting up to speed. It has already made me feel at home in the short amount of time I have been here! – Kim Ullstrup, Product Operations Manager, U.S. 

Listen and act on feedback

Demonstrate your commitment to your employees' well-being by actively listening to their feedback and concerns. Create channels for them to voice their opinions, suggestions and grievances, and take meaningful action based on their input. By showing that their voices are heard and valued, you foster a sense of belonging among your team members.

I feel heard and valued by the company's receptiveness to my feedback. – Sachin Pandey, Associate Recruitment Manager, India
Leadership teams both globally and in APAC give constructive feedback and encourage all ideas. They are the first ones to acknowledge and appreciate efforts. This makes me feel valued and most importantly heard. – Anchana Sivakumar Nair, APAC Marketing Manager, India

 Leadership team involvement

Whether it’s fostering a positive work environment, supporting personal goals or listening and acting on feedback, our Horizontal employees stated the importance of leadership leading these initiatives. 

The thing that always stands out for me is how senior leadership, all the way up to Jeremy, treats everyone the same - regardless of your position with the company, how long you've been with the company, whether you come into the office or are fully remote. We are truly lucky to work for a company and people who genuinely value their employees – not just another number but as human beings who may be parents, spouses, caretakers, students ... the list goes on. – Nikki Fulp, Product Director, U.S. 
I feel valued as a Horizontal employee because I have a manager who supports me, advocates for me and wants to see me succeed! – Tessa Wolff, Account Manager, U.S. 

Offer opportunities for growth

Show your love for your employees by investing in their professional development. Offer opportunities for training, skill-building workshops or mentorship programs. Providing avenues for growth not only benefits employees individually but contribute to the overall success of the organization.

Feeling valued as an employee at Horizontal Talent is greatly influenced by the recognition of my contributions and the opportunities for professional growth. The supportive team environment and open communication channels encourage collaboration and innovation, enhancing my sense of belonging and motivation. – Rahul Nidagundi, Marketing Analyst, India
Having opportunities for growth and development, as well as being part of a supportive team culture, makes me feel truly valued as an employee. – Vijary Nair, Country Director, India
I feel most valued when I see the tangible impact of our human resources initiatives on employee engagement and satisfaction. Recognizing and fostering a culture that prioritizes professional development, open communication and work-life balance are key elements that contribute to my sense of value within the organization. Additionally, the collaborative and innovative nature of Horizontal Talent enables me to contribute meaningfully to the company's success, reinforcing my sense of worth as an employee. – Divya Gunashekar, Human Resource Director, India

Support work-life balance

Demonstrate your care for employees by promoting a healthy work-life balance. Encourage them to take breaks, use their vacation days and prioritize self-care. Flexible work arrangements, such as remote work options or flexible hours, can also show your understanding and support for their personal needs and commitments outside of work.

To me, the most incredible aspect of being a part of Horizontal is the work-life balance they offer. As a single mom of a special needs son, this is simply an immeasurable way to show value to your employees. Horizontal doesn't just say this is important, they demonstrate it, encourage it and support it 100% of the time. I am so blessed to be here. – Michelle Worman, Contracts Administrator, U.S. 
Soumodeep sums it all up when asked what makes him feel valued:
Acknowledgment for my efforts and accomplishments inspires me to pursue excellence. A supportive work atmosphere where constructive criticism is given and gratitude is expressed helps me feel valued. Flexible work arrangements, like remote work or adjustable hours, recognize my desire for a work-life balance. I feel like a vital member of the team because of the management's openness and regular communication regarding the objectives and performance of the business. As a team, we uphold a culture of gratitude by celebrating successes and milestones, which makes me feel appreciated for my work. – Soumodeep Das, Technical Recruiter, India
This Valentine's Day, let's remember to extend love and appreciation not only to our loved ones but also to the hardworking individuals who contribute to the success of our organizations. By showing genuine care, respect and support for our employees, we not only strengthen our teams but also create a workplace culture built on trust and mutual appreciation.

Take a closer look at what our employees voted for when asked what makes them feel valued:


Horizontal Blog- survey pie chart


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