Celebrate Your Employees: 6 Tips to Reinvigorate Your Team and Cultivate Team Development
When the initial energy from the turn of the new year has waned, it can be common for many of us to feel caught up in an overwhelming frenzy of activity. Goals have been approved, budgets set, and now teams are off to the races to begin hitting early milestones to set themselves up for a successful year.
It can be easy for managers to become laser-focused on seeing quick results, especially if last year’s numbers did not meet targets, but it is critical that leaders maintain a sense of level-headedness in managing teams. Otherwise, you may find yourself backfilling key positions within the first few quarters.
Given the unique stressors from the last few years, employee burnout rates are high. A survey conducted by Indeed, one of the top online job platforms, surveyed 1,500 U.S. workers in 2021 and found that over half were experiencing burnout. Further, 67% of these respondents said burnout had worsened during the pandemic.
As your team moves forward in operationalizing initiatives, keep the below tips in mind to ensure that all employees feel excited to come into work and do not succumb to burnout.
1. Celebrate Employee Appreciation Day and/or Week – Coming up on March 4, 2022, Employee Appreciation Day designates a specific time to celebrate those individuals who keep your company going from the ground up. There are a multitude of activities that you can do to recognize your company’s employees, whether you are in a remote environment or back in the office. From delivery services that specialize in sweet treats like chocolate or popcorn, to customized apparel or water bottles (bonus marketing opportunity if it is designed with your company’s logo), to treating your staff to breakfast on the company’s dime. Even small actions, when done with sincerity, can make a world of difference.
2. Liven Up Meetings (Especially When Virtual) – Even those employees who prefer working remote can feel sluggish when their calendar is packed with back-to-back virtual meetings. Given the nature of these calls, employees can start to feel removed without the in-person interactions and small-talk opportunities a conference room or water-cooler provides. While there are some calls that should maintain a more buttoned-up tone, when it comes to meetings like routine team check-ins, it can be helpful to intentionally set aside a few minutes at the beginning or end of the time allotted for fun conversation. Ask about hobbies, upcoming vacations, pets, or other items not on the professional agenda. Connecting on a personal level with your teammates will also help strengthen the group’s bond for professional initiatives, and that feeling of connectedness can help reduce feelings of stress that lead to burnout.
3. Avoid Scheduling Company Activities After Hours – It is very disheartening for a staff member to receive an invite for a company team-building event that cuts into personal time. Especially for those employees who have other responsibilities at home, this can cause feelings of guilt, frustration, and resentment as they work to juggle multiple commitments. Do not ask your employees to stay late for company activities like Happy Hours, staff retreats, and holiday celebrations. Instead, plan those company bonding events or retreats during business hours, demonstrating your appreciation to your team. Here at Cross Impact, we often lead company retreats (both virtual and in-person) that help fulfill this need to reinvigorate your team and provide a dedicated time to strengthen your team bonds. Schedule a Virtual Coffee Chat to learn how Cross Impact can help your team or organization.
4. Place Importance on Strengthening Company Culture – Do you feel confident that you know the general sentiment of your employees and how they would rate their satisfaction at work? Have you recently conducted a survey to gauge employee morale? A great way to minimize burnout at your firm is to ensure that you understand how your employees are feeling. Further, your team needs to know you are taking action to sincerely listen to any qualms and improve the culture as needed. In a time when employees are taking a stand to demand better working conditions, they want to work for an employer who values their mental health and promotes a strong culture.
5. Remember to Recognize Remote Employees – In this world of hybrid work environments, remote employees can often feel left behind or overlooked by their employers. It is critical to be mindful that you are recognizing all employees, regardless of if they are working in your physical office space.
6. Practice Employee Appreciation Year-Round – While companies often schedule a few times during the year to recognize employees, these mainly fall at the beginning and end of the calendar year. It is important to check in with your team at more regular intervals and address any concerns before it’s too late. Your employees should be recognized and celebrated all year long, whether it is through bigger gestures like awards or employee of the month spotlights or a quick email kudos.
Implementing the above steps can help to mitigate employee burnout and improve company culture. However, be mindful that such actions must be conducted in an authentic and genuine manner to be impactful. Remember that achieving a successful business year is a marathon, not a sprint. Prioritizing the health and happiness of your employees will help decrease turnover and improve business health in the long term.
Cross Impact offers Leadership Coaching, a great way to ensure you are bringing your best self to your team and organization!