TEAM ENGAGEMENT · February 12th, 2021

Engagement Idea: Spreading Kindness With a “Secret Admirer” Board

by Amy Metayer


Hospitals and pet resorts in our community are always looking for ways to engage their team members. At Spanaway Veterinary Clinic (SVC) in Spanaway, Washington, hospital leader Amy Metayer helped launched a new initiative every month to recognize the contributions of SVC’s care team. For February, they created a “Secret Admirer” board for team members and clients to share gratitude.

Why did you create the board?

My associate manager and I partner monthly to figure out how we can focus on team engagement. During an LVT week, we noticed that the entire team appreciated being included in the celebration so decided to continue that. For February, we choose a secret admirer theme to tie into Valentine’s day. We elected to use thank you cards so our team can keep the notes. On those hard or difficult days, they can pull out the cards and remind themselves how amazing they are!

Spanaway’s “Secret Admirer Board” enables clients and staff to gratitude for team members.

How does it work?

Each team member has an envelope on the wall. Contributors write on a card what they admire about their colleagues. At the end of the month, during our huddle, we will hand them out and ask if anyone would like to share a message they received. I also asked our clients to contribute. Since we are still operating curbside service, the team is missing those interactions. I posted a picture of our project on the SVC Facebook page and asked clients to give the team shout-outs. Our clients loved it and replied with their shout-outs and or gave them when they call in. This has helped reconnect the team with our clients. I am writing out all of the comments and placing them in the team’s envelopes.

What have been the results so far?

The team has appreciated our focus on engagement. The board is front and center in our main hallway, so we can all be reminded to practice kindness in a continued time of stress. The team is also eager to see and keep their admiration messages. We will definitely repeat this activity and have already lined up next month’s topic: March Madness.

Here are just a few of the stellar comments from SVC’s clients:

  • “Thank you to all of the wonderful doctors that have taken their time and continue to help out Douglas with his medical issues. I love the office staff – you all are very friendly and very easy to talk to.”
  • “Thank you Charlene for always being that helpful, positive, and uplifting voice on the other end of the phone.”
  • “Dr. Wright and Dr. Slaybaugh… Thank you for taking such great care of my fur children. I wouldn’t trust them with anyone else.”
  • “Everyone is wonderful, and Dr. Wright is special; she is so caring with my Heidi and Abby. Patty & Dixie are the best receptionists ever.”
  • “Dr. Dani Mechur. She’s dedicated to the practice of good medicine.”
  • “I love Jilly! She is why I take my animals to Spanaway Vet!”

For questions about this engagement tactic or any other of our recognition ideas, email me at

Amy Metayer


Support Center | Olympia, Washington

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