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Idea Fair

Elf on the Shelf


This past holiday season Park Country Club decided to buy an "Elf on the Shelf." The goal of purchasing the Elf was to increase employee morale throughout the extremely busy month of December. From the naming process (the team chose Eloise), to the hiding of the elf with notes each night, this increased the management and line level team's sense of fun throughout the month. Eloise the Elf would be hidden each evening by the closing manager with a note or in a funny spot. The team member who found Eloise was awarded a $5 gift card. Once found she would be re-hidden. Overall, the team loved it and had fun searching for her as they re-set rooms at the end of shift. Management had fun hiding Eloise as well, trying to out do the last person who had hid her!


We thought of the idea toward the end of November when we started to see people posting their own Elf on the Shelfs on Social Media. We purchased an elf along with twenty-five $5 gift cards to places like Target, Starbucks and Wegmans. These were to be the rewards for the person who found the elf each day. If the elf wasn't found on a day, the person who eventually found it, got the gift card for finding it along with the gift cards from the days it was not found. We rolled out the idea to the team and immediately asked for suggestions on what to name the elf, which we ultimately named Eloise. Once named, the idea was spoken about at pre-shift meetings and Eloise sent a cute "elfie" to the staff in the first December schedule email. Starting on December 1st, the closing manager hid Eloise each evening. Since the club was decorated for the holiday season at the time, there were PLENTY of fun places to put Eloise. Eloise traveled to wreaths in the hall, Christmas trees, our wine cabinet, our sound system unit where she was a DJ, and countless other spots. Every time someone found Eloise, we took a picture of them with the elf and sent out weekly collages to the team in the schedule email so that they could see who had found her and where that week. Our team loved it and enjoyed the gift cards as little holiday perks for themselves or to gift to others. Managers loved it as well; each one typically sending a picture each evening of where they hid it in hopes of out-doing previous hiding spots by others. This low cost employee morale booster was a hit during a month where we typically see our team get run down and lose enthusiasm. This brought a sense of fun to our clubhouse and team!

About the author

Rachel Zilka

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