Stop Being a Lousy Boss

Posted by Mindy Tulsi-Ingram on 19th Apr 2024

Stop Being a Lousy Boss

In a recent meeting, a client shared that she had been a terrible boss. When an employee had a baby there was no acknowledgement, nor was there a gift to recognize the birth. When another employee got married – the same. I’m sure other less significant events also went unrecognized, but we must keep in mind that these events are significant for the employee.

Employees are key to our businesses, and happy employees are our biggest asset. Recognizing their achievements boosts morale and motivation in the workplace, and a gesture of recognition of milestones and significant events in their personal lives can go a long way.

Appreciation is a fundamental human need. We all want to be recognized and appreciated. Employees spend 8, 10 or more hours a day at work, but their personal lives are important to their overall wellbeing by providing a healthy balance to their day.

In Canada, first Friday in March is designated National Employee Appreciation Day, but like most observances, there should be acknowledgement and appreciation every day.

Communication is Key

How many employers know about their employees’ lives?

  • Their spouses – do they have one? Do you know what type of work they do, or know one interesting fact about them? Is there a significant anniversary coming up?
  • Their children – do they have any? What are their ages, or any upcoming significant events such as graduations? Maybe your employee needs an afternoon off to be with them to attend a game or event.

If you are a small company, have a diary of dates and events with reminders to jog your memory. In a larger organization, have HR or heads of various departments maintain this information so personal milestones do not go unrecognized.

Events such as marriage or new baby should be celebrated at the time with an appropriate gift or acknowledgement, showing that you care.

Be first to say thank you with:

  • Thank You cards, notes or letters of appreciation
  • Certificates, ribbons, awards or bonuses/cash awards
  • Personalized gifts, gift cards, experience gifts

Make an extra effort – even small gestures of appreciation dramatically impact productivity, positivity, morale, employee retention, and business success.

  • Stay mindful - think of how you affect others
  • Acknowledgement confirms their work is valued
  • Opens an opportunity to establish a bond that did not exist, and gives them permission to come to you for help
  • Creates an environment with less anxiety and allows your employees to thrive


  • Be bold by providing unconventional benefits or perks
  • Make a public or private declaration of accomplishments
  • Demonstrate appreciation - actions can make a real impact
  • Tangible gifts are more symbolic and have lasting value

Best Practices for Employee Care

  • Know that people who feel appreciated will always do more than expected
  • Be aware that not all gifts or situations are equal
  • Personalize the impersonal
  • Celebrate employee’s milestones or special events in a timely manner
  • Create strong bonds, deep loyalty as they are the core of employee engagements

It Starts with You

As leaders you have the opportunity to reset each of these dimensions - with every single conversation, every meeting and every encounter.

Be a caring and a considerate leader by demonstrating that you value your employees and create an environment where people want to come to work every day.

Don’t be a lousy boss. Show you care, even when you don’t think you have the time.

Let Green & Green help you with your selection of high-quality gifts of appreciation for your most important resource.