Thoughtful Ways to Say Farewell to a Long-Time Employee

Thoughtful Ways to Say Farewell to a Long-Time Employee

Losing a long-term employee is never easy – they know the ins and outs of your company and have seen your business through the good times and the bad. Then there are the financial costs of employee turnover. There can often be substantial economic factors associated with hiring and onboarding a new employee when one leaves. 

However, if you recognize that your employee’s reason for leaving your company is final, let them go with grace. Acknowledge their years of hard work for your business and thank them for their time. Here are some tips for doing just that.

Host a Going Away Party

Before your employee’s final day at your company, throw a party to honor their hard work. To host the best party, understand the reason your employee is leaving. Are they retiring? If so – the party should be a celebration of their years at your company. Have they been promoted to another position within the company, or are they taking a job at another location? Host a party that feels like a send-off to the new post. 

It’s unwise to ever spring a surprise party on the employee, as it can add undue stress during the final busy days of their position. Consult with the employee in advance and ask which date will work best for their schedule.

Get the employee’s co-workers involved in the party planning as they are much more likely to know the employee personally than higher-ups. During the party itself, keep the mood upbeat and focus on memories of the employee’s work for the company over the years. If someone can make and present a slideshow of pictures during the party, that can add a sweet touch. 

Farewell Party Ideas

Depending on your employee and the nature of their departure, a themed going away party could be a good fit. Think about your employee’s interests – do they like games? Maybe they’d like a party featuring trivia or a scavenger hunt. Consider the following options when planning the going-away party:

1. Themed Potluck

Try picking a food theme for your party, like BBQ, Italian or Mexican, and request that everyone bring a dish to pass. Because the main dishes are covered, you’ll only need to provide drinks, plates and utensils. Best of all, sharing food is memorable to spend time together.

2. Virtual Trivia

If your office operates remotely, you can still have an unforgettable virtual send-off. Compete against colleagues to test your trivial knowledge. Enjoy a fun evening in honor of your employee.  

3. Outdoor Scavenger Hunt

Get outside to engage in this challenging yet fun scavenger hunt idea. Collaborate with your colleagues to use creativity to find clues, all while exploring your city – a fantastic team-building exercise and unique send-off for your employee. 

4. Escape Room

Employees will have to put their heads together to solve puzzles to make it out of the room in time. There are even virtual escape room options if your company is remote-based. 

5. City Brew Tour

If your employee likes beer, this farewell party idea might be perfect. City Brew Tour offers behind-the-scenes tours of breweries, beer tastings, and a meal. The tours are available in most large cities on the east coast. They also provide virtual events. 

Give a Gift

Near the end of the party, publicly thank your employee and present them with a gift. This is another excellent way to honor your employee for their hard work.

1. Wine and Charcuterie Pairing

Go with a classy gift like a wine and charcuterie board pairing. This gift is perfect for any employee who likes to entertain or enjoys treating themselves to fine things. Consider selecting a wine and charcuterie gift because of its emphasis on creativity – mix and match the perfect wine to accompany the right meat and cheese. 

2. A House Plant

Consider getting a gift that keeps giving, as a house plant. House plants make a lasting impression. As your employee cares for the plant, they will remember their time at the business and reflect on their friends and colleagues. Some great ideas for house plant gift options include– a Jade plant, a Ficus Tineke, and the Hoya Heart plant.

3. Themed Gift Box

If you know your employee’s tastes and preferences, consider getting them a gift box based on a common theme like mindfulness, snacks, or even books. There are thousands of themed gift boxes available for you to choose from based on your employee’s interests. 

4. Write a Note

Finally, you’ll want to include a note with your employee’s gift. Ensure you express your gratitude for the employee’s many years of service. Through the written word, convey that you respect their hard work and dedication to the company. Feel free to be straightforward and say that you’ll miss them around the office and that you wish them all the best in the future.

Be Thoughtful and Thankful

When you take the time to host a party, purchase a personalized gift, and write a note to say farewell to your long-time employee, you honor them for their hard work and dedication to your company. Your employee will be forever grateful for the opportunity of working with your business.  

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