Company milestones are absolutely worth celebrating, but sometimes it can be hard to think of the perfect item or experience that is on the same level as the milestone you are celebrating. To help you out, we’ve rounded up 10 ideas for celebrating company milestones, from custom corporate gifts to employee anniversary plans:
1. Consider a special rebranding
If your company is celebrating a major anniversary or launching a new product, a rebranding might be in order. Rebranding is a major time-consuming project that often takes months, but it’s worth it to ensure that you are making the big impression that your milestone deserves. Talk with your marketing team or your agency about whether or not your milestone is deserving of a rebrand.
2. Have a company lunch
If you work out of an office, lunch is a great time slot to celebrate together because it doesn’t require anyone to get in early or stay late. Lunch is a good option to celebrate smaller or more casual milestones, such as a teammates’ birthday or the end of a departmental project. You can either go out to a nearby restaurant or have it catered into the office if you have a team that is too big to comfortably fit at a restaurant table. Make sure to put it on the company card; you’re treating your employees, not the other way around.
3. Host a party
If your milestone is deserving of a bigger celebration than lunch, that is the perfect opportunity to throw a company party (and potentially invite clients or vendors as well). Launching a new website and the end-of-year holiday gatherings are a couple of examples of times when you might want to throw a party. These events do require some lead time in order to book the space and the caterer, so make sure that your events team has plenty of heads-up.
4. Go on a company excursion
If your company is more adventurous, you might be looking for something more unique than a typical lunch or work party, which might not cut it. Instead, look into doing a company excursion together, whether that’s a wine tasting or skydiving. Choose an activity that pretty much everyone will like (don’t pick a wine tasting if a lot of your employees don’t drink, for example). This will definitely need to be scheduled in advance if you have a big group, so don’t drag your feet on it.
5. Create custom company swag
Promotional gifts are always a fantastic way to commemorate company milestones. For smaller, internal employee gifts, we recommend picking something big and meaningful like a company branded letterman jacket. For items that you plan to hand out to potential clients at events, bulk gifts under $5, such as custom pens, might fit your budget better. You should keep a range or promotional items on hand so you always have a gift ready to go no matter the occasion.
6. Publicize your milestones
For some milestones, it makes sense to celebrate them internally with just your team. However, with other milestones, such as a product launch, you’ll want to shout them from the rooftops and let all your customers know. Don’t be afraid to promote these big milestones via email, social media, and even physical mailers. You may wish to offer a special discount code or another enticement to encourage your customers to make a purchase and make them feel like they’re also part of the celebration.
7. Send handwritten cards
In the age of digital media, handwritten cards and letters are actually precious and rare — which is why they’re the perfect gift to celebrate a company milestone. Depending on how many cards you are sending out, you can have the CEO hand-write them all or slip them among a team. You can also print the greeting on a custom card and then just hand-sign them instead if you need to send hundreds of cards.
8. Create an employee anniversary plan
As a startup, you don’t have to worry about celebrating employee anniversaries very much, in the beginning, because the company just hasn’t been around long enough. But as your company begins to mature, it’s time to think about commemorating one, three, five, and ten-year anniversaries. Many companies like to offer a specific swag item or experience at certain milestones, such as a custom vest on your third-year anniversary or dinner with the CEO on your fifth. Your anniversary rewards can be any number of things, but they should match your company identity.
9. Give extra PTO
Sometimes the best gift you can give someone isn’t a physical gift or even an experience, but rather simply time. Giving your employees extra PTO after a major project (especially one where they had to put in a lot of extra hours) is sure to be appreciated. Some companies also give employees free PTO to celebrate their birthdays or major work anniversaries. If you have a very small, young company with not much budget, then giving away PTO is also a great option to consider if you can’t afford the other options on this list.
10. Commemorate it digitally
If your employees are willing to participate, creating a digital record of your year or company history can be really meaningful and fun. This can take many forms, from a team photo to a company video to an infographic timeline. This idea may not work in more traditional companies that prefer a more analog approach, but if your company is full of digitally savvy people, it’s a great option.
We hope this list gave you some ideas for how to celebrate your next company milestone! Don’t forget to plan ahead and give yourself plenty of lead time so you’re not rushing to throw something together at the last minute.
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