Winter can be a joyous time, especially throughout the holidays. But it can also be tough. The short days, long nights, and cold temperatures can give everyone a case of the winter blues. And some of your employees may be living with seasonal affective disorder, or SAD. All of this can make it hard to stay focused at work. But there are a few things you can do to help boost employee engagement this winter.
Mix It Up
Routines are important for any business, but they can also make work feel like drudgery. Whenever possible, find a way to mix things up. Even a small change to a single process can help stimulate discussion, getting people out of autopilot and making them feel more engaged. And you never know when one of those discussions might lead to a better way of doing things.
Show Your Gratitude
One of the fastest ways to boost employee engagement is to show workers that they matter. Strongly consider giving some type of holiday gift to each employee, or host a catered lunch at the office. But don’t forget about gratitude outside of the holiday period. Implement an awards program or at least be sure to say “thank you” often and publicly.
Consider the Commute
In some parts of the country, winter driving can be hazardous. And even in areas that don’t experience ice or snow, it can be a dark, cold, and lonely slog to the office. Do your employees really need to come in every day? Could your teams support remote or hybrid work? Offering employees the opportunity to work from home when the weather is bad or they’re not feeling well can dramatically boost employee engagement.
Also remember that both commuting and remote work come with costs to the employee. Could you offer commuting benefits, such as gas reimbursement or a bus pass, to your in-office workers? What about a small allowance for remote employees who are using their personal equipment and internet connection? These types of benefits show that you value your employees and understand their needs.
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