For many, Christmas is a time of good cheer and festive fun. But for some it can also be a stressful or lonely time. How can you support your employees?
It's great if employees are given the chance to let their hair down and have a bit of extra flexibility to reward them for their dedication over the year, but it is also key to recognise and acknowledge the tell-tale signs if a member of staff isn’t coping and give them additional support. So what can you do?
1. Introduce Christmas incentive package
You may want to implement workplace saving schemes so that staff save money throughout the year and receive a lump sum in November or collect vouchers which can be used at Christmas.
2. Encourage people to keep to a healthy diet
It is easy to reach for the treats lying around but this just gives an instant high followed by a sugar crash. Healthy snacks keep energy levels raised and blood sugar levels balanced so you’ll be more productive. Offer staff healthy eating workshops to help them survive the Christmas excess.
3. Consider flexible working options
Giving your employees some flexibility and time off to enjoy those treasured moments or an afternoon off because of several late nights entertaining clients can lead to a more motivated and valued workforce. But remember to be consistent.
4. Be clear on what you expect during working hours
Employees need to know what you expect from them during December. If it's year end and you have targets, then get everyone’s buy in and the month will go much smoother.
5. Remember, not everyone has family
Remind your managers to keep an eye out for those in their teams who may struggle with the festive period and may need some extra support. If you provide an Employee Assistance Programme, then make sure your staff are aware of the service it provides.
6. Have some fun in the office
Arrange a Christmas quiz, team night out or secret Santa presents to have some fun in the office. Or put a new twist on it by inviting staff to donate presents to a local charity as a way of giving something back to the community.
7. Encourage staff to keep active
Get staff to keep active by creating lunchtime walking groups. Fresh air can clear the mind and a 30-minute brisk walk can use up to 200 calories.
8. Thank your people
Many companies are starting to focus on the coming year in December, but January is renowned for the month when people start to change jobs.
It is important to keep staff motivated so be sure to make time and effort to show your appreciation so when they come back after Christmas they are still engaged and ready to get on with the job in hand.