The holiday season can be really stressful and that only increases the challenge of keeping your employees engaged at work, here are a few reasons why employees may be stressed:
1. Companies push their employees harder to meet year-end goals, yet often fail to give them adequate recognition.
2. Kids are out of school, making a mess of the nicely organized schedule. Leaving employees hastily trying to arrange child care.
3. Employees are thinking about friends and family members who may have passed away or are not in town, leaving them reminiscing or melancholy.
4. Workloads can get heavier as co-workers take time off.
With less than 30% of employees engaged at the best of times, it’s critical not to lose focus of employee appreciation and recognition during the stressful holiday season.
How can you maintain or even increase employee engagement in such tricky circumstances? One of the best ways is to ramp up the utilization of employee recognition best practices and reinforce positive relationships between employees and employers.
Here are a few tips on how to improve employee recognition during the holiday season:
1 Know what makes your Employees “tick” An Ernst & Young survey of global workforces reported that one-third of employees found maintaining work-life balance is getting more difficult. During the holidays, employees have extra demands on their personal time, so maintaining work-life balance gets even more challenging. One option to illustrate your care for employees well being during the holiday is consider their working preferences during the holiday period, such as offering flex schedules and the ability to work remote. Also, promote peer recognition particularly when it comes to employees covering their co-workers time off.
2 Share Company Goals and plans for the holidays Make sure employees understand the “destination”. Inform employees on year-end goals and communicate your guidelines and policies for schedule flexibility. Healthline research found that 62 percent of people feel very stressful or somewhat stressful during the holidays. The more transparent your organization is about year end goals and the more they give employees recognition for successfully meeting them, the more your workforce will believe your organization values their effort.
3 Collaborative activities Sponsor holiday activities that encourage your employees to collaborate as a team, such as planning a holiday party or charity event. A fantastic way to do so is to allow employees to leverage their Employee Recognition Points to donate them to a charity and support people in need. This is a powerful intrinsic motivator.
4 No denying it! Do not avoid recognizing the holiday’s because you think it will disrupt business. It will be more of a disruption and is likely to create employee resentment, says Bob Nelson, president of Nelson Motivation and author of “1501 Ways to Reward Employees.” Acknowledge the holidays and celebrate with festive mood. The holiday period is a great time to recognize people who “give” of themselves or donate their time to decorate for the holiday season to enhance the holiday cheer.
5 Use Intrinsic and Extrinsic Motivator’s Giving a nice pair of wool socks is a nice gesture, however it doesn’t do much to increase employee engagement. An employee engagement program focused on recognition and rewards that tap the intrinsic and extrinsic motivators allows employees to recognize each other for work contributions and successes throughout the year, and especially during the holidays. It also broadcasts achievements to the entire company, boosting morale up and highlighting employee accomplishments on a daily basis.
Employee recognition should not be reserved for just the Holiday Season. Businesses need to continue employee engagement efforts throughout the year to keep employee morale high and the appreciation momentum strong. Employees want to feel recognized every day. If employees recognize each other throughout the year they will feel valued and motivated. The workplace then has the momentum to no longer contribute to the stress of the holiday season but can become a highly engaged sanctuary for all employees.