With the holidays quickly approaching, your employees may feel a bit more distracted than usual. They have child costumes to sew or online shop for, pumpkin pies to bake, and Christmas parties to organize! As the boss, you can help to keep your employees on track while keeping things festive in the office.

Christmas office party photo shoot
photo credit: Blake Danger Bentley / Flickr

If you are looking for some practical tips, here are three ways to help keep productivity up during the holidays:

Set goals

When employees have a lot going on, it can be tempting to just do enough to get by at work because they have so much to do once they exit through those office doors in the evening. To keep this from happening, clearly set goals to maintain focus. That way, when an employee comes in on Monday morning he knows exactly what it is he needs to accomplish for the week in order to meet the set goal.

Remind your team often of the goals you’ve set. Have monthly meetings to set new goals, and write said goals on a whiteboard for everyone to keep in mind throughout the month. Another benefit of doing monthly meetings is that you can keep your team members focused on the tasks at hands.

 Adhere to hard deadlines

If your office is pretty lax when it comes to turning projects in, this is a good time of year to start assigning deadlines (personally, I think it’s a good policy year-round). Making sure there are clear deadlines for your employees keeps everyone on the same page and provides less room for any miscommunication.

Along with the deadlines, work on providing progress updates to ensure progress towards the goals you’ve set.  Communicate regularly and proactively, so that everybody knows how the business is doing. Keeping your team on the loop is very important in maintaining focus, even in the midst of the festivity.

Christmas Jumper Day
photo credit: The Lowry / Flickr

Don’t forget to celebrate!

To keep the holiday, giving spirit alive, and to thank your team for all of their hard work, be sure to reward them! Give small rewards when employees go above and beyond the set goals, whether it be a Starbucks gift card to keep them cozy on those colder fall days, or with a nice desk treat like a cupcake!

You can also reward your team periodically just to thank them for their overall hard work. Throw a couple holiday parties; have a Halloween potluck and encourage everyone to dress up! Keep the holiday spirit alive in the office – it’s good for you, your employees and your business!