Office Solutions And Ideas To Help Employees Survive The Return To Work Blues
You might notice a lack of motivation, energy and productivity as employees return to work. You may even be feeling it yourself. After all, the post-holiday blues is a real experience and can make it hard to settle back into a daily work routine.
But while it takes time and effort to adjust from the holidays highs to work mode, sometimes a little encouragement and motivation from employers is all that’s needed to speed up the process. Use these office solutions and ideas to help motivate your employees, while creating some positive new work habits in the process:
1. Focus on the important tasks
Don’t expect employees to dive straight back into tackling emails and an expanding meeting calendar. Instead, encourage them to make a conscious decision to prioritise tasks. Ask employees to make a note of the five most important things to be delivered for their first week back. This will help them channel their energies during the post-holiday slump and keep them focused. Office solutions such as to-do lists, diaries and planners will ensure employees take the time to plan and create a visual reminder.
2. Break with the old. Embrace the new.
If your organisation is being held back by traditional ways of working, it could be time to embrace the new. The New Year is the perfect opportunity to address productivity and look at ways of improving how employees work. Many organisations are turning to Activity Based Working (ABW) to create a permanent work culture shift that increases productivity. In a recent blog, we shared how ABW allows people to physically locate themselves where it is most suitable for them to complete their work and how there are lots of ways to embrace ABW in your workplace.
Consider more ergonomic furniture that encourages productivity and comfort while being movable and flexible. Look at the layout and natural lighting. Also, think about the technology solutions that will enable more flexibility in where employees work. Laptops, tablets, and headsets are all office solutions that will enable employees to work at their best.
3. Remove distractions
Even if you’re not ready for ABW, every workplace can still benefit from decluttering. This is the process of removing unnecessary distractions to help employees be their most productive. Lead by example with some simple tasks:
- Edited emails. Reduce the length of your emails. Be unrelenting and delete what’s not needed. Stick to relevant facts and include a clear statement of what you want from the recipient. This will save time for everyone.
- Focused meetings. Only book and attend meetings that have a clear purpose. Adopt a policy to always ask the meeting organiser what is required from you. You’ll be amazed at how many meetings take place simply because they’ve always been in the diary.
- Clear your workspace. Nothing is more distracting than a cluttered workspace. Use the first week to encourage employees to organise themselves and their workspaces ready for the year ahead. Provide office solutions such as storage, desk cleaning supplies and desk tidies to help keep everything in order.
4. Set a professional development action plan
Returning to work is the perfect time for employees to consider their professional development goals for the New Year. Encourage employees to set aside some time so they can consider their developmental goals. Offer individual meetings to talk about their goals and create an action plan to achieve them. This is a good opportunity to organise corporate volunteering opportunities for employees who want to contribute to your businesses corporate responsibility program , or explore other ways they can use their time to give back to the community, such as mentoring.
5. Prioritise health and wellbeing
Many employees will be returning to work with health-related New Year’s resolutions, and it stands to reason that supporting them is worth the time and effort for employers. After all, healthier workers are more productive and happier. In the kitchen, provide healthy snack and breakfast options to help keep energy levels high and fuel everyone’s workday. Look to office solutions such as standing desks, and desks that go from sitting to standing, which are designed to avoid the health issues associated with sitting from 9-5. Footrests, anti-fatigue mats and lumbar support backrests are also effective office solutions to help people work productively and reduce work-based injuries.
The post-holiday blues can be challenging, but the most important thing is to think of it as a transition period. By using the office solutions and ideas above, your employees will adjust and be performing at their peak before you know it. As an industry leading office solutions provider, Staples has your return to work strategy covered with office products, kitchen supplies, safety products, technology solutions and business furniture to suit all types of workplaces.
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