Home » Wow your Team with these 21 Employee Recognition Gift Ideas

Wow your Team with these 21 Employee Recognition Gift Ideas

employees celebrating


Research shows that employee recognition leads to 73% of workers being less likely to feel burned out consistently. Plus, they’ll be 4-times more likely to feel actively engaged in their work. Teams in the top 20th percentile of engagement experience have nearly 60% less turnover

Considering that losing a manager making $60,000 costs your company–on average–$30,000 to $45,000 in recruiting and training expenses, you need to do whatever it takes to reduce turnover. 

Thus, you should prioritize strategies to prevent turnover, like employee recognition. In fact, you’ll get a tremendous return on your investment with such an approach. After all, it only takes a small employee recognition-based gesture to significantly–and positively–impact your team members. 

What is Employee Recognition?

Employee recognition is when employers or team leads acknowledge a person’s effort, behavior, and contributions to the company’s values and goals in a formal/informal and timely fashion. 

When Would You Recognize Employees?

You can recognize employees when they reach a benchmark, like a workplace anniversary or a sales goal. Employee recognition gifts and ideas are also appropriate when someone gets promoted or has been performing at a high level for an extended period. Or, it could be on Employee Appreciation Day

Lastly, you can show employee recognition for no reason other than you wish to convey gratitude to your team members.

Keeping the above sentiments in mind, here’s 21 employee recognition ideas and employee recognition gifts you may want to consider as a part of your strategy.

The Massive Impact of Employee Recognition on the Employee and Business 

When organizations show recognition, it makes members of the team feel valued. Employee recognition gifts also motivate team members and give them a sense of belonging. It builds trust and improves the overall workplace experience. Finding new and unique ways to recognize workers for their hard work increases loyalty and lowers turnover rates. Publicly acknowledging team members for their dedication provides countless benefits. There are advantages for the employees and the business. Things to recognize team members for include:  

  • Problem-solving and taking initiative
  • Work Quality 
  • Thought leadership and skills 
  • Excellent teamwork 

Nowadays, there is no need to award team members the same old gifts they’ve been receiving for years. Companies such as Swagmagic offer countless new and unique employee recognition ideas. 

5 Effective Ways to Show Team Members You Appreciate Them 

Finding creative ideas for employee recognition is essential for the organization’s success. Receiving praise from upper management for achievements is meaningful for employees. It shows them that company leaders see them and know they are helping the company achieve success. There are countless employee recognition program ideas, and five fantastic recommendations are below.  

Reward Employees With a Delicious Feast  

Sending employees yummy food to show recognition is the perfect gift for anyone. You can send them to in-office and virtual workers all over the country. Companies can reward employees by sending them a link and allowing them to pick their favorite treats!  

Recognize Workers With Company Swag 

Recognizing workers with company swag helps create a positive work environment. It increases morale and helps generate new business. It’s an excellent way to encourage and show employees how much you appreciate them. Swag acknowledges hard work and helps the company get its brand out to the public. Company swag is a fun way to celebrate team members and can be anything from straws to pens, coffee mugs, to mouse pads.

Team Building Exercises 

Team building is not a new term. Unfortunately, when many people hear the phrase, it brings back awkward memories, and they cringe. Yet, implementing suitable activities can offer great entertainment. It can also bring teams closer together. Workers also learn how to work together effectively and offer many other benefits. 

While happy hour has long been the go-to for work functions, many workers can feel left out if they don’t enjoy drinking or the bar setting. Team building exercises also provide exciting and creative ideas for employee recognition. The activities can reward team members while building trust and fellowship among management and staff. Consider these ideas for your next virtual team building activities.

Create a Custom Swag Store

Organizations can create a customized SwagMagic store and allow team members to shop for their favorite items. It’s easy for company leaders to pick items and upload the company’s design. Employees can begin accessing the store within a few days. 

An ad for building a branded swag store. A laptop with a teambuilds swag store on the screen.

Surprise the Team with Custom Swag Kits

Recognizing workers by surprising them with custom swag and snack boxes is another excellent way to build a positive environment. Everyone likes their favorite foods, and receiving a custom snack box creates office positivity. Sending delicious sweets and food items is an excellent yet affordable way to give a big thank you and show recognition. Award recipients worldwide can go to the website and pick all their favorite food choices. 

For many reasons, swag Kits are thoughtful and the perfect gift for team members. The kits provide recognition, show appreciation, and raise brand awareness for your company. Select and package swag kits to your liking and ship the boxes anywhere. 

5 Employee Recognition Ideas

  1. Take a day each month to celebrate specific team members and list what they’ve done to excel. You can commemorate their accomplishments during a quick pep talk with the whole team at the start of the day.
  1. Create a Slack channel dedicated to celebrating team wins and shout-outs or have a time in your weekly all hands meeting where you give the team an opportunity to thank colleagues for their help that week.
  1. Giving someone a surprise bump in pay after a sustained period of excellent performance is one of the best ways to show employee appreciation.
  1. Offer extra paid time off for your top performers if you want them to keep producing.
  1. For team appreciation, consider monthly or quarterly events or surprises like a free lunch via UberEats or Superior Dishes, or an exciting team building event.

17 Employee Recognition Gift Ideas


  1. Customized company hats–beanies for winter or baseball caps for summer–are an ideal way to show team spirit.
  1. A Ladies ThermoBall™ Trekker Vest boasting your company’s branding is comfortable, breathable, and fashionable. 
  1. Do you have any ladies on your team who enjoy the rugged outdoors? Show them employee recognition with the Ladies Canyon Flats Stretch Poncho.
  1. Go further with the team spirit by customizing sports jerseys for your employees. This will further solidify their bond with each other and their connection with the company. 
  1. Is your team active and on the move during their spare time? Then, the Apex DryVent ™ Jacket will support their lifestyle and show your appreciation. 


  1. Do your top performers thirst for ales, pilsners, and IPAs? Enter the Frosty Beer 2 Go by Asobu as the ideal appreciation gift.
  1. Does your team like a little variety and refreshing flavors in their drink selection? Then show your appreciation with the Ice T 2 Go from ASOBU


  1. Port Authority’s Commuter Backpack makes travel to and from the workplace much more organized, streamlined, and comfortable. 
  1. The Collapsible Picnic Basket from Koozie gives your recognized employee(s) the storage they need to enjoy a picnic, weekend barbecue, or any other fun-filled outdoor extravaganza. 
Picnic bag- a sample gift for employee recognition

Experiential Gifts

  1. Taking your team to an escape room shows appreciation while building team-wide problem-solving abilities. Consider a virtual one through TeamBuilds.
  1. Buy your team tickets to a local sporting event to show your appreciation. They’ll root for the home team together and further solidify their bond.
Another way of employee recognition- Team tickets to local sporting events
  1. For hybrid offices, running a virtual scavenger hunt is entertaining and accounts for people working from home.
  1. A private virtual in-office concert allows team members to listen to some of the best music in the world from the privacy of their own offices.
  1. Bring mobile massage therapists into the office. Your team’s stress will melt away, and they’ll never feel more appreciated. You can also give a remote employee a gift voucher for a massage. 

Personal Growth And Wellness

  1. Today’s employees want the chance to grow their careers, making continued education opportunities a thoughtful appreciation gift.
  1. A workout pass or gym membership shows appreciation because it proves you are focused on employee wellness.
  1. A self-care kit for your employees will emphasize that you value your team members’ well-being, while conveying your appreciation. 

Bonus idea: Visit SwagMagic to choose from any of our swag items if you want to honor a group or team on a milestone or project.  

How Can SwagMagic Help?

Colleagues having fun discussion-

Image Source

SwagMagic empowers employers and bosses to convey employee recognition while creating your own corporate branded swag with our catalog of over 2000-plus swag items. By partnering with us, you can create your own swag store, send out curated swag kits, or order swag in bulk.

Click here to find out how SwagMagic can meet all your swag-based employee recognition needs.   

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