Celebrating an employee's birthday or work anniversary is one of the simplest (and most easily overlooked) ways you can show the individuals on your team how valued they are. While there's no need to throw a party or disrupt the entire work day, a few creative gestures go a long way.

Don't let being busy get in the way of making everyone on the team feel special at least once a year. Below are 10 easy and inexpensive ideas that the members of YEC use in their own companies to celebrate everything from birthdays to a job well done.

1. Reinvent the Birthday

Instead of celebrating employees' birthdays, we celebrate work birthdays. Why burden everyone with one more lunch or grocery store cupcake on a day meant for family and filled with traditional recognition? By celebrating the anniversary of their hiring, we can tell each employee that it's significant that they gave a year of their life to help build our dream. And that definitely deserves cake!--Anthony Johnson, American Injury Attorney Group

2. Give Groupon Gifts

Our company usually does this to thank employees for their hard work, but a new way to celebrate milestones would be to get them a gift to a certain location or event. Groupon has tons of deals of really interesting gifts that will take employees out of their element, like deals on skiing or rock climbing at a park nearby. This allows a day off from work and a new, exciting experience.--Miles Jennings, Recruiter.com

3. Have Their Friend Organize an Event

Ask their closest friend at the company to organize the celebration so they can come up with more personalized and creative ideas. This also helps create a fun and exciting atmosphere where every few weeks there is a different event to celebrate someone on the team.--Randy Rayess, VenturePact

4. Make It a Spectacle

We went out and bought a gigantic prize wheel you spin at the county fair, labeled all of the prize spaces with stuff like "Extra PTO Day," "Half-Day Friday," and "Movie Day" (this last one lets you watch a movie at a theater nearby on us... during work hours). When it's your turn to spin, the entire office gathers around and cheers you on. Just don't hit the whammy--that means you sing to us.--Vinny Antonio, Victory Marketing Agency

5. Give Handmade, Personal Gifts From Etsy

When an employee's birthday is coming up, I like to spend some time finding a lovely, handmade gift for them on Etsy. It lets the employee know that I know them well enough to know the things they like. And the fact that its custom-made for them feels much more special than a gift card. Plus, there is an added bonus that I am also supporting other small businesses with each purchase.--Rachel Rodgers, Rachel Rodgers Law Office

6. Create a Birthday Desk Explosion

Employees decorate the birthday person's desk/area with a lot of birthday stuff. We have a blow-up, 4-foot-tall cake, birthday care bear, streamers and other random birthday things. We keep everything in a bucket in the office and you know to expect a birthday explosion on your desk when you arrive on/near your birthday. It's a fun way to let them know we remembered.--Angela Harless, AcrobatAnt

7. Give Notes of Gratitude

Birthdays and other personal milestones are a terrific excuse to express gratitude. Birthdays are sweeter when you receive a stack of notes from coworkers sharing stories about why they value you and the things you do. It creates a positive reinforcement loop.--Avery Fisher, Remedify

8. Give Them the Day Off to Enjoy It

The best way to celebrate is to give the employee time off. I give all of our staff members a floating birthday holiday to use so they can properly celebrate their birthday. We also give an additional week of vacation for a wedding/honeymoon. So many of my friends have saved vacation days for years to accommodate this life milestone, and we wanted to make this event a bit easier on our staff.--Cassie Petrey, Crowd Surf

9. Write an Employee Spotlight

Twice a month, I send out a company-wide email showcasing achievements. One is a department showcase, which highlights a goal reached or something exceptional the department did together. The other is an individual spotlight, which is less about work and highlights a personal achievement. This allows the company to get to know what other departments are doing and gives individual praise too.--Joshua Waldron, Silencerco, LLC

10. Sponsor an Event on Their Behalf

Take the entire team out for a trip or organize an event, but do it in the employee's name. So if its Jill's birthday, have her take the entire team out for laser tag but have the company sponsor it.--Pratham Mittal, VenturePact