A Farewell to Work: 5 Tips for Celebrating an Employee’s Retirement

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    Image: Yutacar / Unsplash

    As an employee, retirement is one of the most significant days in your working life, signifying the end of an era and the start of a new chapter. It can bring up a lot of emotions, so as an employer, it’s vital that you help them manage this transition thoughtfully. 

    Retirement celebrations are a crucial step in the process, allowing you to show your gratitude for all the hard work they’ve put into the business. The aim is to send them off to their new life chapter with kindness, appreciation, and recognition of their achievements. Here are five easy tips to help you celebrate a team member’s retirement in style: 

    1. Give a Thoughtful Gift

    Retirement gifts should always be thoughtful, so resist the temptation to get a comedy gift or something generic. Instead, put some thought into selecting a lasting reminder of the positive impact the employee has had on your company. Don’t skimp either – they deserve more than a cheap token present. 

    Consider high-quality corporate gifts and other custom options. This gift is a representation of all they have given to the business. While it does not have to be painfully expensive, it should be well-made and of demonstrably good quality. 

    1. Send a Thoughtful Card

    A card signed by everyone in the office is an affordable but meaningful way to ensure your worker knows they matter. A large, spacious card can collect the thoughts of your entire team, combining them into one deeply meaningful item. Admiration, hopes for their future, thanks, and in-jokes or memories can all be written on the card, making it a small but meaningful gesture the whole company can be part of. 

    1. Arrange a Send-Off Party

    Whether you opt for an office party, a meal out, a night out on the town, or any other special occasion, it’s important to give your team the opportunity to collectively farewell the retiring employee. Some people make it a surprise, some like to plan it in collaboration with the retiree – your team will let you know what’s appropriate. 

    Whatever you choose to do, remember that 62% of Americans aged 18-34 don’t drink. Indeed, among all age groups, many refrain from alcohol due to religious beliefs, lifestyle choices, and more. So, consider making it a sober affair involving a healthy variety of foods and drinks to suit all dietary requirements. Everybody should be able to enjoy this opportunity to let the retiree know how special they are. 

    1. Create a Memory Book

    A memory book is a charming way to celebrate a person’s career history with a company. Although the average amount of time a person works with a single employee is just over four years, many people work for ten or more years with one employer until they retire. All those years equal lots of stories that can be collated into a memory book for the retiree to treasure. 

    1. Ensure the Boss Acknowledges the Retirement

    Two-thirds of Americans feel underappreciated at work. When it comes to retirement, that sense of underappreciation can hit particularly hard if their years of dedication don’t even warrant a mention. For this reason, it is imperative that the person who owns the company acknowledges the person leaving. If this isn’t possible in person, they could send a video message or email. This shows true appreciation of that person’s contribution to the company and will be a meaningful end to their time as an employee. 

    By thoughtfully celebrating your employee’s retirement, you’ll help them start this new chapter of their life in style. Here’s to acknowledging important endings, and exciting new beginnings. 

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