- Talent Management
As we approach Thanksgiving in the U.S., that means that Hanukah, Christmas, Kwanzaa, New Year’s and the other winter holidays aren’t far behind.
For most people, this means a time of celebration and gathering with friends and family, but for employers it can mean a time when employees lose focus, take substantial amounts of time off work and are generally disengaged from their jobs.
It’s vital that managers and leaders keep their workforce engaged, even during challenging times, and, in particular, the holidays because these can simultaneously be some of the busiest times of year for companies.
Here are some guidelines to keep your workforce strong and productive between November and the beginning of January:
Appreciate Your Employees
The holidays are a time of giving thanks, and that should certainly extend to your employees. Employees want to feel appreciated year-round but particularly during the holiday season.
When you show recognition and appreciation for your employees during the holidays, they’ll tend to be better year-round.
Even if you’re not able to offer a substantial holiday monetary bonus, consider these ideas instead:
It’s not uncommon for employees to lose motivation and demonstrate reduced productivity in the months of November, December and early January. They’re focused on the holidays, shopping for gifts, family gatherings and taking trips.
If you want to keep them on track, consider initiating a friendly competition during the season. Don’t make it too cutthroat or it will turn employees off. Instead, make it something fun that will keep them on their toes and working to achieve goals, even during a time when it be easy to slack off. Productivity-encouraging competitions don’t even necessary have to be work-related. Having something like a fitness competition can be a good way to encourage a healthy workplace and keep employees on track with their professional goals.
You should also prioritize and be clear about goals and expectations for your employees during this time of year. Focus on the things that are necessities and eliminate unnecessary goals that can be put on the back burner until the start of the new year. Employees need to know what’s expected of them to stay on track during the season when it’s so easy to become distracted. If you’re clear and concise with expectations, it will help employees remain motivated.
Another way to improve productivity is to avoid meetings during the holidays, or at least during December. You want to be focusing on the must-dos, and to prevent employee burnout and have priorities being met during the holidays, avoid unnecessary meetings and wait until everyone can start fresh in January.
The holidays are frequently seen as a joyful time, but they can also be a time that creates a lot of stress for employees. From the demands of visiting family to seasonal depression, while you may not be able to help employees avoid every issue, you can help them manage their stress.
How do you inspire your employees to remain productive and happy during November and December?