By Evan Vitale
Now that we’re closer to Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, New Year’s Eve and many parties, gatherings and events, it might be hard to keep your team focused and productive.
Unfortunately, work productivity does tend to slack off and suffer during the holidays. It’s nearly impossible to avoid it, but you still need to keep everyone focused in order to meet deadlines and continue work production.
Here are some tips to help keep everyone on track while, at the same time, allowing everyone to enjoy the holiday spirit:
* Plan vacation days and work days well in advance. This lets everyone know what days your office will be closed (or closing early) and prevent everyone from taking the same week off for holiday vacations and leaving you with an empty office.
* Consider allowing some employees the option of working from home. While this might be difficult with all the holiday distractions, employees can check e-mail regularly and produce reports and statements between the feasts and eggnog toasts.
* Allow and plan for a holiday office party. It’s almost expected in every office. Your team has worked very hard over the past year, so let them celebrate the season together. It can be as simple as a pot luck lunch or, perhaps have food catered in. Some small offices take their staff to lunch at a nice restaurant and, yes, allow employees to have a small gift exchange, too!
* Continue to take care of your customers and clients, but do be careful in launching any new programs, services or products during the holiday season. Remember, your customers and clients are also celebrating the season as well and probably won’t have much brain space for any new initiatives.
* Be reasonable. Hey, it’s the holidays! Don’t be Mr. Scrooge and have your employees working late on Christmas Eve – or any other evening for that matter. This is the time of the year that families matter the most, so allow them to be with their families and friends. They’ll appreciate it.
Finally, make sure that you are giving yourself a break too to enjoy the holiday season.