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2015 ends in 15 days. Then, we get to ring in 2016! I love the New Year. I love that renewed feeling that comes from starting over with a clean slate, don’t you?

But, we have 15 more days until the year is done… And before you can prepare for a great 2016, here are two ideas that you can do now – and it’ll only take an hour – that will make for a great new year for you and your team.

#1. Evaluate your team. Create a list of each employee on your team. Write down one thing that is top of mind about how great the employee is right now. Write down one thing that is top of mind that you want them to improve upon in the coming year.

#2. Express gratitude. Take the information from your quick evaluation and write thank you notes for each of your employees about what they do well and how that impacts the team.

Thank you notes on desksIt goes without needing to say, but I need to mention it just in case it’s not obvious enough – everyone loves thank you notes.  I’m pretty convinced that these gratitude notes will not only make their day, but find their way to their desk tops. Thank you notes always end up on people’s desks… always. You and they will benefit from seeing thank you notes on your desks.

Another benefit is that your employees will go into the holiday season knowing that you’re aware of their strengths. That positive reinforcement will make a big difference as they evaluate if they want to stay on at your company, or not.

This activity shouldn’t take more than an hour, so do yourself a favor and express gratitude to your employees for specific ways they improve the team.

I always love comments and the conversation that comes from these blog posts, so tell me, how else do you express gratitude for your employees?