There’s a big change happening across your workforce that you may not have even sensed yet… it’s vacation season and sandy beaches and frosty fruit-adorned drinks are creeping into the forefront of you and your employees’ subconscious affecting the ability to focus on the critical business tasks at hand. But rather than scold and scowl, embrace the energy and uplifting positivity vacation dreams can bring and put it to work for your advantage.
There is a unique vigor and enthusiasm that comes from employees who have had the time to unplug, regroup and recharge on a vacation. But while you still have their attention before they go and even after they come back, here are a few techniques to put that energy to use right now – and keep it going all year long.
- REDO YOUR DECOR: Make your workplace as inviting as you can. Creating a work environment that is clean, inviting, nicely decorated and comfortable goes a long way to keeping your employees who are tired out and longing for a break focused in the interim. Color can profoundly affect how productive you are. Research has shown that blue colors affect your mind; yellow your emotions; red your body; and green your ‘balance’. By combining these colors you can influence your behavior and make any old cube farm into a paradise-like place to be.
- RELAX THE SCHEDULE: Pick a day of the week or set a schedule when employees can set their own hours. Letting your employees have more flexibility all year round will go a long way to helping them get the rest they need to be super productive at the office.
- GO TECH-FREE EVERY DAY: Encourage 20 minutes a day technology-free. This means you have everyone silence their phones, turn off their PC monitors and sit back with a drink to relax and chat. Use the time each day to have a brainstorm session, catching up as coworkers and encouraging creative thinking on problems that have been stuck on the docket for a while. It’s a mini-break for the mind and the spirit that may lead to some amazing innovations as well.
- TAKE A TEAM TRIP: Often in the daily grind departments and work groups that are constantly in motion don’t take the time to adventure out of the office together. Encourage a half-day quarterly ‘field trip’ in small groups. It will build stronger relationships among teams, produce more trust and encourages your employees to love where they work and who they work with. Give the teams a simple task to accomplish while they’re out like scoping out a competitor’s product or service. On the ground research is always great – and it can be fun!
- REDO YOUR TO-DO’S: The vacation mindset focuses on wish lists of activities you want to do, not tasks you have to do. Encourage your employees to create a short wish list of things they’d feel great about accomplishing every day and every week. Provide them a journal to track them in and check-in on their journal at review sessions. Giving your employees the tools and language to re-frame their daily list of demands will make a world of difference in their attitude and enthusiasm.
Enact a few of these tips this week and maybe your employees will be saying this soon too… “My Vocation is my Vacation. I love what I do.” ~Nick Cannon
P.S. Thank you to all our veterans and active military members on this Memorial Day week; we all get to vacation because of you!
By Danielle Lafontaine, Director of Marketing at Chet Holmes International
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