The year has flown by, hasn’t it? December is looming on the horizon and we all know what that means. No, not just Christmas. I’m talking about that mad, last minute rush to get everything done before the end of year holiday season. Whether you will be scrambling to get your own work done or to keep up with client demand, it’s going to be an exhausting time.
Remember last year? There seemed to be no end in sight and the work just kept coming! And the closer you came to December, the more urgent everything became. On top of work, there’s a lot of Christmas shopping and preparation you need to do, too.
It’s no wonder so many people lose their motivation at that time of year, and the last thing you want is to have grumpy and frazzled staff trying to care for your clients!
There are a number of ways you can keep your team energy and motivation up during the rush, but these three techniques have proven to be the best I’ve come across.
While this should go without saying, the trouble is that the end of the year sneaks up before you’re ready for it, and that’s how you end up in the mad scramble. This year – right now – stop and start planning for the rush. You know what happened last year so use this historical data as your starting point. When did the rush begin? How did it show itself? Was it a demand for products or extra service? What went well and what didn’t? What gaps did you need to cover? What could be done differently?
The more prepared you are, the more prepared your team will be and the more energy they will have. By taking away the pressure of the last minute surprises, you immediately reduce the impact it will have on motivation levels.
Think about your work processes and staffing levels. If something needs to change, plan it and start arranging it now.
At this time of year, we’re all just big kids. It’s the Santa-effect! This makes it the perfect time to introduce some fun rewards, and don’t just think about your normal work achievements. While it’s great to reward people for making the most sales or reaching their weekly goal, why not throw in some fun things, too? Believe me; it can get pretty competitive over a pack of Smarties, so reward things like the cleanest work space, the first person to get three paper balls tossed into the waste bin. Use your imagination and try to come up with ideas that will give everyone a good chance to be rewarded.
It’s party season for everyone, so celebrate. The promise of a great Christmas party at the end of the year is motivating. You can also enjoy mini-celebrations, too. Plan them for the weeks you know are likely to be tough. A special morning tea, a cake, a quick Kris Kringle, holiday decorations, a little lolly on everyone’s desk when they arrive in the morning. It doesn’t take much to lift the mood and make your team smile again.