It’s easy to be distracted by warm sunny days and the anticipation of summer vacation. Many individuals are also facing chaos at home with children home from school and the organization of summer camps and child care.
How Can You Keep Employees Focused, Engaged, and Productive?
Patrick Hull, contributor to Forbes highlights Zappos as an example of a company that emphasizes keeping employees happy as the key to maintaining their commitment. Supporting employees and providing flexible options can cement loyalty and encourage productivity.
- Offer flexible options, especially in the summer months, to allow for schedule management, child and aging parent care, and time off for summer vacations. Allow work from home options if the situation calls for it, and hire temporary employees to supplement for staff on leave. Institute casual Fridays or change the dress code in the summer so that staff can be more comfortable and less formal.
- Employees who can be productive while also managing their personal lives will be less stressed and more likely to be enthusiastic and engaged. A relaxed attitude can lift moods and even boost creativity.
- Use the summer to offer rewards and incentives such as tickets to sporting events and theme parks. Add some fun to the workplace and host charity events such as fun runs and connect with the local community. Have your staff take part in local events to boost your reputation as an employer.
- Plan social events that are outside and that involve employee families such as picnics or other outings. Institute occasional opportunities for training or community involvement. Such events are not wasted time but represent a valuable investment in team building and collaboration. Staff have the opportunity to connect with each other and to improve communications.
A study by PricewaterhouseCoopers revealed that both millennial and older generation workers desire work-life balance and flexibility more than high salaries. Other strategies recommended include building a solid workforce with a sense of community and using contingent staffing to supplement organizational requirements.
Model leadership behavior. Be professional and engaged, but also be open to casual events. Recognize that the work year involves hectic periods but also offers time for recharging.