The Sweet Gift Of Employee Engagement And Strategic Brand Promotion

This guest blog has been provided by Kevin Sheridan, best-selling author and innovator in the field of Employee Engagement

On the heels of conducting a motivational keynote speech for a client in Las Vegas, one of the key executives sent me the most unique post-event thank you gift.  The gift so resonated with me since it leveraged three of the most impactful drivers of both employee engagement and brand promotion and recognition.

First, I’ll share the gift with you and then I’ll highlight the drivers it leveraged, such that you and your team can use them to make a difference for your employees and customers.

sugarhouse casino card

sugarhouse casino mounds bar

The gift was from Wendy Hamilton, the General Manager of SugarHouse Casino in Philadelphia,  but was assembled by Trish Smylie, the Director of Customer Service.  Trish had creatively assembled a box labeled “Shoot For The Stars.”  I opened the box with great curiosity and found a hand-written note with messaging that was interspersed and punctuated with well-known candy.

sugarhouse casino starburst and rolo sugarhouse casino KIND and extra

sugarhouse casino card2


This gift was most powerful because it leveraged three key drivers of employee engagement and brand promotion:

  1. Strategic vision and mission. The candy in the gift was representing and promoting the organization brand, SugarHouse.
  2. Communicating lasting impressions with the customer. The thank you gift was fun and unlikely to be forgotten.  As such, others recipients,  especially customers, would give their future loyalty to the casino.
  3. Having fun. Fun is the missing driver of both employee and customer engagement. So many organizations, managers, and employees forget to have fun while working, and as such, this engagement driver goes under-utilized, or not leveraged at all, when trying to reach world-class engagement levels.

This video from SugarHouse Casino shows how much fun they are having, (quite fittingly beginning with Wendy the GM) and how much fun you could have at their property, and more importantly, at your organization.


Kevin Sheridan is an Internationally-recognized Key-Note Speaker, a New York Times Best Selling Author, and one of the most sought-after voices in the world on the topic of employee engagement.   He spent thirty years as a high-level Human Capital Management consultant, helping some of the world’s largest corporations rebuild a culture that fosters productive engagement, earning him several distinctive awards and honors. Kevin’s premier creation, PEER®, has been consistently recognized as a long- overdue, industry-changing innovation in the field of Employee Engagement.  His book, “Building a Magnetic Culture,” made six of the best seller lists including The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today.  He is also the author of The Virtual Manager, which explores how to most effectively manage remote workers. 

Kevin received a Master of Business Administration from the Harvard Business School in 1988, concentrating his degree in Strategy, Human Resources Management, and Organizational Behavior.  He is also a serial entrepreneur, having founded and sold three different companies. Kevin can be reached via email at, on LinkedIn at and on twitter @kevinsheridan12. His webpage is

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