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Helping Employees Get Through the “Winter Slump”

Four practical ways to help.

We’ve all been in situations during the cold, dark winter work months where we simply want to act like a bear and either hibernate until Spring or lash out at people. But as a productive member of society, and your workplace, those oh so tempting options just aren’t practical. Whether you are an employer looking for ways to keep your employees engaged, or an employee searching for ways to stay motivated, here are four practical ways to help.

1. Create competition

One of the first things I run to when I’m sensing a lack of motivation is competition. I’m a naturally competitive person, so this comes easy to me. However, when most people are put into competition against people they know (either for a prize or not), they tend to step up their work and try to outdo their friends and coworkers. This comes from either a desire to be the best or to have fun with friends. If you are doing this for yourself, give yourself different goals through the day, week or month. Challenge yourself to get there, and then reward yourself when you do.

2. Outline new goals

It is important to explain why those goals were chosen, and how meeting those goals can benefit employees. One of my friends who owns a small business realized his company usually brings in about 50% of their summer profit during the winter, which was quite startling to him. He outlined a new goal or bringing that number up to 80% of what they do in the summer and gave some very compelling rewards. Because he took the time to outline the goal and the reward, the company brought up winter production to over 90% of what they do in the summer.

3. Be positive!

This one is simple, but it is important. If you want your employees to stay motivated during the winter, watch how you act around them. If you’re constantly in shutdown mode, they most likely will go there as well. However, if you’re consistently pumping positivity into the work environment, everyone else will feel it!

4. Find what the true value is, and key into that

Each company attracts a certain type of individual because that company offers some value. A counseling ministry will usually attract caring, sympathetic, do the right thing type of people. Try to find out what the value is that people are searching for when they come to work there. Sure, there will be people at your business who are just there for a paycheck, but the majority will be there for some value. If you can discover that, and make it a major part of the work environment, especially during the winter lull, you’ll discover employees beginning to regain their motivation.

If you have questions on how to best protect your business, call us at Capitol Insurance.