‘Tis the season for misplaced shopping lists, mile-long lines, and unpredictable weather. The holiday season is hectic enough with last-minute gifts and busy stores, so adding workplace stress to the mix can be overwhelming. The pressures of shortened deadlines, end-of-year demands, and equally frantic clients can damage already-frayed nerves and limit productivity. What can organizations and managers offer their employees to quell holiday burnout?
A surefire way to alleviate stress is to be accommodating with time-off requests during the holidays. In a study done by Accenture HR Services, 54% of 660 surveyed employees reported that flexible hours during the holidays would help with workplace stress, while 26% wanted to telecommute, at least once in a while, until the seasonal rush passed1. Some companies simply provide options for flexible hours, while others go the extra mile and offer an official “shopping day” to get errands finished before the holidays.
If additional days off aren’t possible for your company, offer a few hours a week for employees to handle online shopping or other organizational needs. Get teams involved or consider office-wide games and promotions, like finding coupons and online shopping deals for the chance to win cash or prizes. Set guidelines in place to ensure all employee perks are fair and equal so that everyone can share in the good cheer.
A Relaxed Atmosphere
Easing up on presentation during the holidays is a great way to help employees feel more relaxed. Even simple changes to work clothing, like adopting an informal dress code, can cut employees some much needed slack. Seasonal decorations also keep spirits bright: consider providing each department with a budget for holiday decorations.
Ways to Recharge
Encourage employees to wind down using healthy outlets like regular exercise. Organize a team charity walk, or seek group deals for sports lessons. Even a fifteen-minute power walk for coffee with a supervisor can be a great way to clear your head and stay focused – while getting to know a fellow coworker better.
Make sure employees know when to ask for help, and that it’s ok to do so. Be sure to enforce deadlines without adding unnecessary stress or piling on low-priority projects that can wait another day. Reward hard work while allowing room to breathe.
Above all, be understanding and flexible during the busiest time of the year. It can be an emotional and overwhelming season for many, so take a deep breath during stressful times and remember to practice patience and empathy. Keep an open-door policy to address any needs or questions as they arise, and above all, remember that this season is supposed to be wonderful, not dreadful!
Family owned and operated since 1932, Prudential Overall Supply provides high-quality textile and uniform rental program solutions for businesses. With more than 25,000 customers (including 1,250 that have used Prudential’s services for more than 25 years), Prudential is dedicated to the best possible products at a fair price. For more information, please call 800-767-5536 or visit prudentialuniforms.com.