I was watching CNN last weekend (yes, I watch CNN for fun), and saw a story about Jack Windolf, CEO of Bollinger Insurance, who gave all 434 Bollinger employees $1,000 from his own pocket -- calling it a "mini-economic stimulus package."

Turns out, after Windolf sold controlling interest of Bollinger last year, he received a $500,000 bonus. Acknowledging that Bollinger's employees "are the ones that do all the work. They are the ones who bring the successes," Windolf wrote checks to the employees, and the only strings attached were that they spend the money on themselves to help move the needle on our limping economy.

I think Jack Windolf is my new favorite CEO, and not just because he made his staff $1,000 richer at a time when they likely sorely need it. But because he didn't just say employees are his company's biggest asset; he backed it up with action.

I know times are tough and not every company CEO has $500,000 just lying around. But it doesn't take a lot to make employees feel valued and appreciated, and they need it now more than ever.

What low-cost or no-cost ways are you using to show employees your appreciation? Comment and let me know.

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