While the festive end-of-year break is undoubtedly crucial to the health and wellbeing of your staff both physical and mental, many offices experience something of a productivity slump in the New Year as employees transition back into the working routine. They are however a few things you can do to ease this transition and improve upon the effectiveness of the workforce, allowing you to hit the ground running in 2018 with a positive attitude and an output to match.

One major positive step you can take is to ensure clear and concise communication between colleagues, management, and departments, introducing your staff to the workload ahead without simply dumping it on their desk on calling it a day. Scheduling a meeting for the start of year is paramount, as this allows staff to refresh their memory as to current priorities and set new goals for the coming year.

On the subject of setting goals, this should become annual practice as it can work wonders in regards to providing motivation and a feeling of accomplishment. The idea of these sessions is to help guide employees through the goal-setting process and encourage them to determine both individual and bigger picture goals, and should not be treated as an occasion to make unrealistic demands. You should also take time to recognise the achievements of your workforce, perhaps even hosting an in-house event designed to provide recognition and promote a sense of solidarity between colleagues.

Office managers should also pay close attention to employee satisfaction. A great way to help bring up excitement, motivation and engagement levels is to offer staff opportunities for professional development. Schedule industry-specific training or host motivational speakers to give staff something to look forward to post-holidays. Illustrate your commitment to each employee's personal growth by reaching out to individuals to get their input on the types of training that would benefit them most.

When employee motivation is at an all-time low, offer support and perks that will help switch employee mind-sets back into production mode. Returning to work can feel like a chore to some, so be sure to treat the New Year as a new opportunity to excite and inspire your staff.

Sam Bonson

Sam is an aspiring novelist with a passion for fantasy and crime thrillers. He is currently working as a content writer, journalist & editor as he continues to expand his horizons.
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