After the excitement of the Christmas holidays it can be difficult to get back into the groove of work. Before long energy levels will be dropping and with it will go concentration, stamina, and effort. In short, productivity will decrease. Consequently it is vital to boost your flagging staff with natural pick-me-ups and fun incentives, and this list displays how to make the return to work a stress free experience.
1. Get your employees going in the morning!
If you do not have a coffee or beverage station at work you should invest in one; you can sign up for coffee deliveries with a variety of companies. However, you should encourage diversity in the drinks you offer. Promote a healthier message to your staff by offering green or herbal teas, or choose coffee alternatives such as mate or roobis. Smoothies are also very popular – post reminders for staff to get their daily Vitamin C intake by buying fruit juice at lunch instead of fizzy drinks! Above all else you should make sure water is available in your office – staff must remain properly hydrated to do their best work.
2. Start celebrating special occasions
Whether it’s a birthday or a baby shower, when an employee has something big going on, you should recognize it. Recognizing important life events and having the company join in the celebration shows employees that what happens outside of work is just as important as what happens at work. When an employee feels that their personal life is valued, they will work harder in their professional life.
3. Recognize your employees
Staff who work diligently for no reward will ultimately become dejected. When employees do a good job, recognize their respective accomplishments. Offering rewards and incentives for hard work will see productivity increase, particularly if the prizes on offer are particularly good. Offering early finishes on a Friday, pay incentives, and prizes such as chocolates will boost morale and promote a more informal, but hardworking, office environment.
4. Make all employees take breaks
Many employees feel that they simply do not have time to take a break. However, without taking a break every so often, those same employees may begin to feel as though they never get a chance to relax or walk away from a project. While breaks are not mandatory, encourage your employees to take breaks every so often during the work day. Breaks allow employees to think about something other than work and come back to a project with a fresh mind.
5. Get to know your staff
Implementing programs and investing in items such as coffee pots are small ways to show your employees you care. When your employees feel that you care, it helps boost morale around the workplace. If you want to gauge employee satisfaction, all it takes is a simple, anonymous survey. Ask how happy your employees are and find out what they are happy or unhappy about. Once you know the answer, work on providing a solution to any issues. The key to keeping your employees happy is staying up-to-date with how they feel about work throughout the year, and not just after the holidays. Conducting such surveys at quarterly intervals would help maintain consistency with their well-being.
Altogether, these simple steps can boost productivity in your office for 2012.
About the Author: Jareth Smith works for Office Kitten in Manchester where he writes, researches and blogs about the business world.
Photographs by D’Arcy Norman – www.darcynorman.net