The University of Washington recommends awarding an employee of the month, naming an ongoing recognition award after an excellent longstanding employee, creating a hall of game wall with the photos of awarded workers, giving a personalized coffee cup or a ribbon to standout staff members, and providing gold coins or gift cards to hard workers. Forbes recommends low-cost awards like an extra lunch break or a special "thank you" sign in the lobby to make workers feel appreciated.
Movie tickets, free coffee, lottery tickets or a pizza party in a worker's honor are all effective ways of awarding employees. Creating weekly or monthly performance awards also help to keep people motivated on an ongoing basis. An award that is voted on by the staff each time can also help improve worker performance and increase solidarity among the workers.
Harvard recommends creating awards for workers who serve as positive role models, those who have trained or taught others well, and for the most creative thinkers. Other ideas include an award for workers whose job typically does not get recognized on a regular basis and an award for having an overall effect on positive morale. Public recognition also works as an effective award, such as a mention in the company newsletter, a standing ovation from other people in the office, or a personal visit and word of thanks from someone higher up in the company.