Very difficult jobs and the people who do them well should be recognized. This area offers ideas on how to celebrate the hard work done in community corrections each day. Most of these ideas are low-cost and very easy to carry out, so try a few this year!
Office Staff/Volunteer Recognition Ideas
Imagine how your office would work if there were no assistants to answer phones, sort mail, file, order office supplies, fix your computer when you break it, help find a lost file, assist when you can't get online, or unjam the copier. Probation and parole agencies get through each day with help from office staff and many times volunteers who give their time to enable officers and agents to have more time in the field.
Here are a few ideas on how to thank these important individuals:
- Start a chip-in box for spare change and use it to purchase fresh fruit for the office.
- Start a walking group to take a 10-minute walk during the busy work day—this will be healthy and stress reducing.
- Create a suggestion box for support staff to submit ideas on how to improve efficiency and give gift certificates to local restaurants for the ideas that improve office work. Just because it has always been done a certain way doesn't mean that's the best way to do it!
- When possible, get staff involved in decorating the office with plants. Live plants are a great way to bring extra oxygen into a room and the watering, pruning, or cleaning of plants can be a nice stress reducer.
- Designate one day during Pretrial, Probation, Parole, and Community Supervision Week as "Staff Appreciation Day."
- Look into whether your local library offers classes in new computer software applications; many times, these classes are free or very low cost. Then, give staff time off during the day to attend if classes are only offered then.
- Send your assistant an e-card to thank him/her for a job well done or whenever they have to stay late to help finish a report for you.
- Buy some nice certificate paper and create awards for special recognition or efforts, i.e., "Beyond the Call of Duty" Award.
- Just say "Thank You"!
And… don’t forget to have new posters printed for this year’s Week! Post them in your office, at the Courthouse, or the District Attorney’s office and ask for permission to post them in the windows of local merchants who greatly benefit from the work of community corrections professionals and the actions they take to keep the neighborhood safe.