As we approach the Christmas season, the feeling around the office starts to become quite festive. Not only do we see people taking their foot off the peddle with shorter hours and longer lunches, but overall productivity tends to fall.
For employers, it is important to keep staff motivated and still working hard in Q4. In addition, they say that around a quarter of employees start to think about their job options when reflecting around the Christmas and new year period. So there is a real incentive for managers to motivate their staff as much as possible and keep them focused and retained for next year.
If you can show your employees that you care about them, they will remain loyal and hard working with you long-term. Below, we offer our tips for motivating staff around the Christmas period.
Spruce up the office
Let’s give the office that festive feeling. Some basic decorations like tinsel, banners, Christmas hats, baubles, stockings for every employee and even a tree can certainly brighten up the place and make the work environment more pleasant. Ebay offers a box of Christmas decorations starting from £13 including banners, tinsel and LED lights.
Rather than the same old dull office every day, it is nice to create more of a colourful environment which can stimulate creativity. In fact, you can give the role of office decorating to some of the staff members as a fun activity to do. You can even arrange a contest of which team can put together the best decorations for their corner of the office – anything to make it interesting.
Other ways to make the office more interesting is by encouraging more relaxed clothing on the few days leading up to Christmas, helping people get into the party spirit. It can also be a nice touch for managers to put out food treats including sweets, chocolates from advent calendars and little Christmas pies or cakes. (The Telegraph)
Not only is the Christmas period a time of celebration, but also reflection. As the end of the year draws to a close, there are plenty of targets to meet including sales, bonuses and commissions. This is a great opportunity for managers to create clear targets for their teams and monitor the progress on the wall – creating a competitive spirit and increased productivity.
Specifically related to Christmas, there is an opportunity to have bake-off style competitions between employees for the best Christmas cake. Other ideas include best Christmas jumper, hat or cards.
A great way to get a team bonding is through a Secret Santa. Every employee is given another colleague’s name who they have to buy a Christmas gift for. There is usually a budget of £5 or £10 established early on. As a secret gift, no one can find out who is buying their gift and it creates a nice dialogue between team members, especially if they don’t come across each other regularly. Popular gifts include personalised office mugs, photo frames, chocolate and bottles of wine.
The Christmas party is the ultimate team celebration. It is a classic way to bring the group together, or if you are a large organisation, to have an event for your individual team. Something that can promote teamwork is ideal such as bowling, laser quest, workshops, retreats and even weekends away. For more active people, you can consider things like hikes, ice skating, indoor skiing, indoor skydiving and company football matches.
The Christmas party can set the tone for what the company stands for and its culture. A small meal where the staff have to pay for the food may have the opposite effect and cause resentment. Instead, something special that the company pays for completely will be a good motivator for the staff.
This occasion also gives senior staff an opportunity to provide a company update, reflect on the previous financial year and discuss goals for the forthcoming year. It is the perfect opportunity to hand out company awards in front of their peers and make people feel truly valued by the organisation.
Popular Christmas parties in London include a trip to Madame Tussauds, The London Eye, renting out a restaurant or Sky Bar.
The Christmas Bonus
Employers are encouraged to give a monetary Christmas bonus to their staff at the end of each year. Some workers expect this as a given whereas it is not offered in some organisations.
Some companies have different policies on how much to give as a Christmas bonus with some saying you should give £200 to £500 or 1% to 5% of their annual income. There is certain etiquette when it comes to giving Christmas bonuses and this includes how you pay tax or claim expenses depending on the bonus.
Whatever you give, you must be fair to all employees and give something that is going to make the worker feel valued and motivated for the future.