Faculty and Staff Appreciation Party
Creative Commons License photo credit: ClatieK

Staff tenure is a great thing to track, acknowledge and celebrate on your community. It doesn’t have to be elaborate, but it truly is a case of “it’s the thought that counts,” that you cared enough to remember and mention it.

It’s simple enough to track. As part of the process of adding people to your team, maintain a document of some sort where you note the day that they officially joined your team. At the start of the year, I enter all of these dates into my calendar for the next 12 months so that I don’t have to constantly refer back to the document, but will instead be able to see when a particular staff member has reached X number of years on the staff, when it is getting close.

What I do is pretty simple right now, for most of the years, I’ll post a thread in the staff section, noting the milestone and then thanking the person for everything that they’ve done. This then opens the opportunity for other members of the team to weigh in, as well, and express their appreciation.

On milestone marks, like 5 years, 10 years, etc., I have taken to posting an announcement in the public forums where I reflect on the time that has passed and express my gratitude. You can view an example of one on KarateForums.com. The community as a whole will join in and share their feelings.

There are a lot of different ways you can go, of course, and I can see myself making adjustments. The point isn’t to do what I do, but to do something. If you are in a position to offer gifts, you may wish to do that, as well. But, no matter what, the important thing is that you care, that you remembered and to make sure that people understand that you appreciate them and what they bring to the community.