February 14 is Company Loves U Day

“ Focus on making the garden beautiful, and the butterflies will come. Focus on chasing the butterflies, and you’ll only scare them away. ”  ROBERT BRAULT

Employee attrition is and has always been a problem for companies. What with the many opportunities available for our workers and professionals both here and abroad, an 8-10% attrition rate is a respectable monthly average these days. Gone were the days of “one life one company” mindset or loyalty means at least a decade of tenure. With options for other industries aside from manufacturing, the choice to be offsite (Work From Home) and a borderless world, companies should  be looking for ways & means to engage its employees.

With Valentine fast approaching, just to share, companies as a form of employee engagement would come up different ways to celebrate this special day. For the workplace, HR is usually charged to come up with novel and fun engagement activities. I’d like to share some good sample activities done in the past.

From an elaborate “Dating Game & Match Making” bonanza, long stemmed red roses & chocolates distribution, Love Notes giving or sweet messages posting for lovers, loveteams, couples, crushes and/or for a plain best friend would be some activities that have been the staple every February 14th

I remember I would always call February 14 “Company Loves You Day” which was how we wanted it to be branded in the workplace. We figured, that this should be the day where our employees would really feel extra loved & cared for, fully pampered & very much appreciated by their fellow workers & peers, their supervisors and most specially by the company itself.  

In one instance, we asked our Supervisors to man the cafeteria, fully aproned, with a ladle on hand, served employee meals for the day. But more than the awkward sight of Supervisors slow to cope with influx of hungry employees lining up, bumbling on portioning meals and spilt soup to no end, it is the symbolism behind that mattered most. The reversal of roles carried a strong reminder for our Supervisors & hopefully realize how difficult it is to carry out orders seamlessly, even with the most precise instruction, a mistake or flaw may happen from time to time. This humbling experience had a bigger impact on the working relationship between the supervisor & worker, I hoped. 

The “Dating & Match making” games have always proved to be an instant hit. Fun was when you find out that these ready to mingle pair seem so right for each other, compatible in so many ways and look a gorgeous pair. We realized though, no lasting true to life relationships ever prospered from this game though. It just proves that true love and affection cannot really be forced on each other. It should come naturally and not be treated as a game. It begins with a spark that both just feel the moment they set eyes on each other.

The distribution of roses & chocolates to ladies is still very much awaited as it is the sure way to a woman’s heart. With the advent of social media platforms, e-cards posting and on line chocolates delivery, though fast would’ve been an easy choice but feels very impersonal.  We had supervisors and managers personally hand these to our female employees. Nothing beats that romantic feeling of receiving these on Valentine. 

Love notes & romantic messaging saw an array of serious to outright funny communication between lovers, co-workers, to their supervisors/managers and to friends. For a geek like me, I would always go for a romantic quote. But almost always, they were the light & funny messages that stood out and get noticed. That is why a good sense of humor is always tops in the list of what a woman finds attractive in a man or a future  boyfriend/husband.  We awarded the best valentine message by the way and it was a “pick up line. 

Valentine celebrations is just but one of the many of the engagement activities that companies can leverage to put across the message of love & appreciation for employees. Though simple or shallow to some, though not a guarantee for retention, it has been an effective mechanism in making employee feel good and happy, indicative of a workplace that is great place to work in. 

But lest we forget, everyday should feel like Valentine in the work place, that aside from gainful compensation & benefits, we communicate respectfully, support each other through thick or thin, being open to suggestions & always ready give honest feedback, having the humility that knows no rank or title, being responsible and accountable for our actions. These beats the most expensive chocolates, prettiest rose, the tastiest Valentine meal, funniest game or pick up line.

Happy Valentine to all.   


For comments & suggestions, you may email author [email protected] & follow in Facebook Herrie Raymond Rivera.       

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