10 Memorable Ways to Celebrate Work Anniversaries

Celebrating employees’ work anniversaries can help boost retention and improve morale. Check out these 10 ways to celebrate them

June 23, 2022
Press the button to generate random icebreaker questions.
There are 300 more icebreaker questions at the bottom of the article
How would you describe your job to a five year old?
What season would you be?
What is a weird food you have tried? Would you eat it again?
What is your favorite holiday tradition?
Would you go in the mother-ship with aliens if they landed on Earth tomorrow?
What is your favorite season?
Do prefer working from home or the office?
What is your earliest memory of this job?
What is the best thing you have bought so far this year?
What is the earliest book you remember?
If you had to move to another country, which one would you choose?
You are the best criminal mastermind in the world. What crime would you commit if you knew you would get away with it?
What is your favorite movie genre to watch?
What was the last thing you ate?
What person from history would you add to Mount Rushmore?
What is a weird fact you know?
What is your favorite part of working from home?
Were the Spice Girls a good team?
Imagine you can instantly learn any language. Which would you choose?
If you could live in any state, which state would you pick?
Which fictional team is the best team of all time?
What did you want to be when you grew up?
What do you usually eat for a quick lunch?
What simple food will you never eat?
Show us the weirdest thing you have in the room with you right now.
Would you rather stay at a hotel or an AirBNB?
What is your favorite movie genre to watch?
Are you more productive in the morning or at night?
Who is someone in your community that makes a difference?
Who was your most unique pet?
Choose one famous person from history you want on your team during a zombie apocalypse.
What is a good way to give back to the community?
Which song could you listen to over and over again?
Is Hugh Grant funny?
What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast?
Would you want to have an imaginary friend today? Did you have one as a child?
What actor or actress would you want to play you in the movie about your life?
What is the best super power?
What is your New Years resolution?
You can only eat one food again for the rest of your life. What is it?
What is the best work holiday?
What is the first gift you remember receiving?
Would you rather join Metallica or Backstreet Boys?
What is the best example of a community you have seen?
What is an easy way to do something nice for someone?
Show us your phone background and tell the story behind why you picked this image.
What was your first job?
Pick any band to play at your funeral.
If you could have an unlimited supply of one thing for the rest of your life, what would you pick?
Which superpower would you give to your arch enemy?
What is the most obscure superpower you would want?
What emoji best describes how you are feeling right now?
If you could live in any country, which country would you pick?
Would you rather live in a city or a town?
What is your favorite holiday?
What is something you accomplished as part of a team?
What is your standard office lunch?
What is your most used phone app?
What is your favorite season?
Have you ever won something as a team?
Imagine you are a professional baseball player. What is your introduction song?
Beach holiday or ski trip?
Have you ever been to a funny comedy show?
Would you rather live at the North Pole or the South Pole?
What is your favorite song to sing?
If you could live in any state, which state would you pick?
Imagine you could teleport anywhere. Where would you go right now?
What is the most unusual job you have heard of?
What was the last thing you ate?
You can visit any fictional time or place. Which would you pick?
What do your family and friends think you do all day?
What movie do you wish you could watch again for the first time?
Show us your most-used emoji.
What was the most unique style or fashion trend you ever embraced?
What movie defined your generation?
You are stranded on a remote desert island. Are you alone or with your worst enemy?
What is your favorite knock-knock joke?
Have you ever told someone Santa is not real?
Do you know how to speak more than one language?
On a scale of 1 – 10, how much of a team player are you?
What is your #1 recommendation in this city?
What is your favorite holiday?
What bucket list item do you most want to check off in the next six months?
What is your favorite mythical creature?
What was the first way you made money?
If you could be great at any Olympic sport, which would it be?
Which song could you listen to over and over again?
When did you start liking/hating mushrooms?
Where is your favorite vacation spot?
Do you take your PTO all at one time, or another way?
Which show do you remember most from your childhood?
Which beverage goes best with pizza?
Would you want to have a personal assistant follow you around everywhere and do what you asked of them?
Have you ever met your idol?
What did you want to be when you grew up?
Would you rather live 100 years in the past or 100 years in the future?
What is your hobby?
When you are alone in the car, what volume is the music at?
Imagine you no longer have to work. How would you spend a Tuesday?
What is your favorite type of sandwich?

Work anniversaries are essential for workers and companies alike. Prof. Judith Rodkin, the former President of the Rockefeller Foundation and the University of Pennsylvania, famously said that it was neglectful not to celebrate anniversaries.

She opines that it is the duty of all companies to take note and give special attention to any anniversaries. In addition, another research shows employee retention is crucial for productivity and a successful business.  And one of the critical factors that influence employee retention is recognition.

Employees want to feel special and recognized. They want to know that their companies care about their welfare outside work.

Therefore, companies need to improve employee recognition and retention. And one way is by fostering team spirit with special celebrations and work anniversaries. 

Why Should You Celebrate Employee Anniversaries?

It is essential to celebrate employee anniversaries; this small gesture helps boost productivity, workplace morale, and employee retention. When investigating why government positions generally have significantly higher retention rates than the private sector, economists found that it was partially due to the feeling of investment workers felt in government roles.

A company that gives employees the feeling that they are more than just a cog in a machine or a number on a spreadsheet reaps immediate and long-term benefits. Employees are less likely to move to a different company and will work harder, more efficiently, and better in their current roles. 

Give Recognition

Giving recognition to an employee and wishing them a happy work anniversary is a meaningful action that will positively affect their workflow.

According to a 2016 Gallup analysis, when asked whose recognition employees most value, 28% said their immediate manager’s praise was the best. The other 24% said the CEO, 12% their manager’s manager, 10% a customer, 9% a peer, and 17% responded with other.

A work anniversary is a perfect opportunity to give a valued employee the recognition they desire from someone who can make it meaningful. By recognizing the longevity and impact an employee has had on a company, the company can show the employee their work is appreciated and valued. 

Start recognizing employees today with Assembly. Book a demo to learn more

Cost of Turnover 

Failure to recognize your employees can increase turnover, reducing your bottom line. Losing one employee can cost a company 50% to 200% of their annual salary and is estimated to cost the US economy $1 trillion annually. If you have a 100-person company, and your average salary is $50,000, standard employee turnover rates could be costing your company up to $2.6 million a year.  

There are many ways to improve employee retention, but something as simple as a work anniversary can be helpful. Many employees report that one of the primary reasons they move companies is a lack of recognition from their superiors. Celebration of work anniversaries can help those wavering employees feel appreciated.

Tips on Tailoring the Gift to Each Employee

No work anniversary celebration is complete without work anniversary gifts. Employee gifts must be tailored to suit each person; otherwise, the gift may feel impersonal.

  • Buy a gift suited to an employee’s tastes, passion, or interests. 
  • Choose a gift that doesn’t just represent the passage of time; choose something that focuses on the actions, achievements, and growth the employee has achieved.
  • Consider what type of anniversary you’re celebrating; a 10-year anniversary requires a larger or more expensive gift than a 1-year anniversary. 
  • Wrap the gift and write a thoughtful card detailing exactly what you appreciate and why.

When you give the gift, don’t just drop it off on their desk. Give the gift publicly with a bit of fanfare to celebrate the employee’s achievement, so the whole company recognizes their contributions. Have whichever manager, boss, or superior with the closest relationship to the employee present the gift.

How to Set Up Anniversary and Birthday Celebrations

Anniversary and birthday celebrations should be set up according to the personality and preferences of each employee. While there are primarily care packages to recognize and reward employees, people are different.

You could decorate their workspace with a banner and balloons or send them lunch on the company using DoorDash or UberEats. You could also create a slideshow detailing their achievements (with a few hilarious slides added to show that you appreciate them, not just for their work ethic.)

Customizing the anniversary or birthday celebration to each employee will show an added level of concern and care, further reinforcing the effect of individualized attention. 

How to Celebrate a Teammate

Similar to anniversary and birthday celebrations, giving recognition to an individual teammate should be customized to their personality. The more thought and care put into an individualized celebration, the better. 

For example, if a more introverted employee always wears sweater vests, have a day when everyone in their area or office wears a sweater vest to show their appreciation. If they are a sports team fan, perhaps decorate the break or lunch room with that team’s paraphernalia. 

It is always a good idea to ask the teammate if the celebration is to their liking before doing anything. It might take the element of surprise out of things, but it is better to ensure you don’t put someone in an unwanted spotlight or do something that could be misinterpreted as insulting or mocking. 

Learn more about how Assembly can help you celebrate your employees today by booking a demo

10 Memorable Gifts or Services You Can Provide to Celebrate Employee Work Anniversaries

The best way to make employees feel appreciated on their service anniversaries is to give them something thoughtful. It could be a physical gift, a subscription to a service,  or a  gift certificate. Explore some of the following ideas that may work well for your employees: 

  1. Subscription to a newspaper, journal, magazine, or book club 

For the readers in your office, a subscription to their favorite publication would show you value their curiosity, support their hobby, and understand what they value.

  1. Customized company gifts 

Giving clothes, mugs, bags, and accessories with the company brand can be a great gift. Customize it with a name or a nickname to make it more personal.

  1. Personalized trophy 

Buying a custom trophy for the employee to celebrate some achievement can be a fun gift. Find something great and positive about the employee and put it on a trophy. 

  1. One-year membership

If your employee goes to a gym, plays golf, tennis, swims, rock climbs, or does another recreational sports activity, buy them a 1-year membership. This also helps promote retention because it shows you are investing in the next year with the employee.

  1. Parking spot or transit pass

Help make your employees’ commute more pleasant by giving them a prime parking spot if they drive or a one-month transit pass for those who use public transportation. 

  1. Weekend away

Find a bucket list destination or activity and give your employee an all-expenses-paid trip to scratch it off their list. 

  1. Donate to a cause they are passionate about

Many employees have causes outside of work where they donate their time, talent, or money. Find out which your employee supports and make a donation in their name. 

  1. Upgrade their equipment 

Upgrade whatever your employee uses for their job to the latest, functional model. This will make their job easier, help them be more productive, and provide a tangible reminder of your appreciation.

  1. A paid sabbatical

Offer long-term employees the opportunity to take a few months off to study, travel, or seek some other form of enrichment that will make them better, more well-rounded employees.

  1. Stock options

For employees with a specific tenure like 5 or 10 years, you can give them a stake in the company. This goes to show appreciation for what they helped build and gives them a financial incentive to continue to achieve.

Build a Positive Company Culture

Switch your company to a productivity app with built-in employee anniversary recognition and celebratory functions like Assembly.

This can streamline celebrations, allowing you to quickly and easily send out congratulatory messages and link them back to your company’s goals and core values.

Ready to begin? Check out Assembly’s celebratory functions today.

Browse our Free Employee Recognition Guide

Get the foundational knowledge on creating an employee recognition program that boosts employee engagement and helps them feel valued.

Explore Guide
Employee recognition guide