The summer is long - in theory - and motivation levels can fall. Here's how to keep your people energised right through to autumn.
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The start of the summer indicates the beginning of the holiday season. It is a chance for staff to take a much needed break, enjoy some sun and most importantly rejuvenate. As much as we enjoy our holidays, it is always tinged by the knowledge that when it is over we have to go back to work.
Therefore it is crucial that business owners take the time to make sure employees don’t suffer from the holiday blues. There are a few simple, yet effective ways of ensuring your staff’s motivation continues from summer through to autumn.
Give your employees an incentive to keep motivated
A great way to encourage your employees to stay motivated is through competitions with the promise of prizes and awards for the winner. Starting the incentive at the start of the summer is a great means of sustaining motivation both before and after the holiday break.
It is advisable to run quarterly competitions. Judging people’s performance over a year is likely to exclude new starters whereas quarterly programmes for new joiners, contractors and temporary staff, such as the best quarterly performer or the best newcomer, ensure everyone can be engaged in the competition.
Mixing whom your staff is competing with will also help drive performance and boost motivation; try putting people in competitions with themselves by comparing their results with the last quarter.
Also, pick a prize that is going to appeal to everyone; the best way of doing it is to let the winner chose a prize within a budget specification so the reward appeals to them personally.
Reward people for their hard work, but let them choose the prize
Ensure they aren’t coming back to a stressful situation
All of us, myself included, have the same thought the night before we get back to work. “I am dreading looking at my emails when I get back.” Or “I have so much work to catch up on.”
Avoid this negative attitude by introducing the option for staff to share their commission with another team member who is covering for them whilst they are away. This incentivises staff to pick up work for others – and not just half heartedly – so returning from holiday is less stressful.
Give your staff something fun to look forward to
Fundraising is a great way of keeping spirits high in the office during and after the summer period. Working as a team to raise money for a charity not only improves team morale but it also increases employees dedication to a company based on their ethical values.
Summer is full to the brim of sporting events; Wimbledon, The Olympics and The Euros. Even if someone isn’t particularly sporty you can always encourage a bit of celebration by taking part in a sweepstake and decorating their desk accordingly.
Allowing staff to watch major sporting events as a social occasion, such as the Wimbledon final, injects a sense of fun and helps to make people feel valued and part of a team.
It's good to allow time for major sporting events
Don’t forget training and development
Despite numbers of people in the office being a bit sporadic don’t forget to encourage your staff to take part in training courses and develop their skills. Maintain training opportunities over the summer season so employees go into autumn eager to put their new skills into practice. Employees who are constantly building up their skills and knowledge all year round will be more engaged and happy whatever season we are in.