Sue from accounting started wearing her Santa hat the day after Thanksgiving. Joel in receiving can't stop humming a slightly off-key "Jingle Bells." It may feel like your team is coming apart at the seams with the distractions of the impending holidays. Despite this apparent deviation from productivity, you can actually use this time to create a more cohesive and happy team.
A few tips...
- Letting down a bit and still managing your team efficiently can be a learning curve, but it's not impossible. Here are a few tried-and-true ways to allow your employees to enjoy the holiday spirit and still deliver. Give your employees a little leeway for expressing their holiday cheer. This can include activities such as getting the group together to decorate the office, hosting a holiday scavenger hunt during a lunch hour, declaring an "Ugly Sweater Day" or other special ways to let them know that you view and value them as people and not just employees. Get in the spirit yourself!
- Acknowledge and reward those that are able to stay focused and get the job done, despite the distractions. Open praise will make them feel appreciated, while also gently encouraging their co-workers to follow suit. PTO, gift cards or other tokens of gratitude are other great ways to say "thank-you" to these individuals.
- Show flexibility when you can. The holidays can bring about logistical nightmares for many -- childcare, family commitments, religious observations -- these and other factors can create a hot mess for an otherwise organized and responsible employee. If possible, allow more flexibility in telecommuting, start times and general scheduling. This will go a long way toward giving your employees the opportunity to meet deadlines AND balance their personal commitments.
Devin C. Hughes, is a highly sought after speaker, author, happiness muse, mindfulness trainer & executive coach. He is the author of seven books and his approach draws from the science of positive psychology, positive organizational research, appreciative inquiry, neuroscience, mindset and mindfulness.
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