Global gratitude movement launched to champion appreciation for retail workers 

  • Retail workers put in an average 26% more hours over Black Friday weekend 
  • 46% of shift workers say that being valued and recognised for their contribution results in more positive working environment
  • If someone says thank you to 28 people and they pass it on,  it could reach almost 22k people – a ripple effect, known as the hyper-dyadic effect
  • #ASimpleThanks is an initiative launched to show gratitude for retail workers over the Black Friday weekend

 

Last year retail workers put in 24% more hours on Black Friday, 24% more on Saturday, and 29% more on Cyber Monday, compared to an average Friday, Saturday and Monday across the year.

The impacts of shift work are well-documented. 24% of workers report negative health implications because of their shift work, with 23% expressing frustration with unpredictable schedules. 24% of workers also don’t think that they are paid fairly for their work, according to data from Deputy, the leading shift work management platform.

Over a third (36%) of workers report that it has become harder to take time off, and 37% state that their work/life balance has suffered as a result. This is further compounded by the fact that most (51%) do not think about their paid annual leave. This lack of attention to holidays can lead to burnout and dissatisfaction among workers.

Despite all of this, 80% of UK shift workers say they love or enjoy their job, with 40% particularly enjoying the interaction with customers.

Furthermore, 46% of shift workers in the UK said that simply being valued and recognised for their contribution would result in more positive working conditions overall, according to Deputy’s 2023 State of Shift Work Survey.

Shift Worker Sunday (26 November 2023) is an international annual day to celebrate shift workers. This is being celebrated this year with a global gratitude initiative #ASimpleThanks, to remind shoppers to appreciate retail workers simply by saying thank you.

 

“Shift workers are behind those daily moments that make our communities thrive, but they often get taken for granted and many feel under-appreciated for the work they do,” says Deputy SVP Jon Wilson.

“Gratitude isn’t just a kind gesture; it has tangible benefits for individuals and wider communities. When we acknowledge the hard work and dedication of shift workers in retail, hospitality and other industries, we create a positive ripple effect, improving workplace morale, mental health, and overall productivity.

“We’re kick-starting the movement to say thanks to shift workers through our app and are encouraging everyone who visits a shop, restaurant, bar or calls a customer service line this weekend to also say an extra thanks to those shift workers to help spread positivity and gratitude to cheer everyone’s working days.”

 

Dr Andy Cope, a Doctor of Happiness, is supporting the #ASimpleThanks initiative. He said: “Let’s say you engage with 28 people in one day, including family, colleagues, and strangers who work in shops. Now, imagine each of those people also interacts with 28 others. This creates a ripple effect, known as the hyper-dyadic effect, where your influence has the potential to reach 21,952 people.

“Positive energy (a thank you) can illuminate the networks of those you interact with, spreading joy and happiness far and wide. But remember, negativity can also spread in the same way.

“Spreading positive, upbeat, energetic, and passionate vibes will not only make us feel better, but it will also elicit a positive response from those around us. By taking a moment to thank retail workers with a simple “thank you,” shoppers can contribute to a positive atmosphere and show workers that their hard work is appreciated. In the grand scheme of things, we may feel insignificant, but to those we interact with, we are incredibly significant, shaping their quality of life.”

 

Visit asimplethanks.org to share a message of gratitude with a shift worker ahead of Shift Worker Sunday, 26 November 2023.