Keeping Employee Interest During the Summer
Research indicates that work productivity declines in the summer, as employees get distracted by after-work plans and the scramble to go on vacations.
While summer may be the prime time for employees to stare out the window and daydream about fun plans, the season is also a great time to mix things up and allow for a more relaxed workplace culture. That doesn’t mean letting deadlines slide or looking the other way when someone does a bad job. It does mean indulging in a little fun, offering some flexibility and having workers express themselves as individuals a bit.
Summer offers a golden opportunity to change up the office routine by holding outdoor activities, something that is tough to plan during other seasons.
Generally speaking, summer activities should engage employees in at least one of four ways: emotionally, mentally, physically or spiritual. For instance, an ‘open house’ event would allow employees to proudly show off what they do to loved ones. Or, a mindfulness cruise on a nearby lake or river would allow workers to de-stress out on the water.
Be sure you consider the kind of events or activities that will interest the majority of your workers. Even the best laid plans will go wrong if employees aren’t interested in them. In fact, you could ask employees about the kind of events they would like to do and pick one with the most support.
Summer is the perfect time to loosen things up around the office and even take flexibility programs out for a test run.
For instance, if you have been toying with the idea of allowing employees to flex their schedule or do some of their work remotely – this is the ideal time to do a trial run, particularly if this season is a slow time for your company.
Introducing more flexibility into the workplace keeps employees inspired partly because they see how your company prioritizes work-life balance.
You could also relax the dress code for employees that don’t have face-to-face interactions with clients or customers. With kids’ soccer games, golf outings and picnic filling up calendar space, your employees will appreciate not having to change out of a suit before they head out to their planned activity.
An even more drastic step would be to allow pets at work. Studies have shown that pets in the workplace actually lower stress levels, boost productivity and lead to employees working longer hours. When is the perfect time to roll out a pet program? The dog days of summer, obviously.
Let employees innovate
If summer is a particularly slow time of year, encourage your employees to spend any spare time they have developing new and better ways of doing things. Hold regular meetings where employees raise common problems or concerns. Then, ask employees to come up with ways to address those problems.
At Labor Temps, we support companies all year round through custom staffing solutions and managed services. Please contact us today to learn more about how we can help your organization.