As fun and exciting as the holidays are, they can also be extremely stressful, particularly when work-related deadlines loom. Add in the fact that employees may be vacationing and that holiday-related days off are a-plenty and it’s no surprise that holiday cheer often feels like an oxymoron. Help your staff stay on-task without feeling frazzled by using these strategies to manage holiday stress:
Know exactly what the coming months look like
Map out the coming weeks and months on a calendar so you have a visual of upcoming deadlines, including work that needs to be wrapped up, proposals that need to be sent out, or other necessary obligations. This way you’re not caught off guard and forced to work extraordinarily long days during the holidays in order to get it all done.
Make sure that vacation requests are in early
If you suddenly realize that all of your employees need the same day off, getting anything done is going to feel nearly impossible. Ask your team to turn in their vacation requests well in advance so that you can ensure you’re not short-staffed at any point as the year draws to a close.
Remind everyone of expectations
If you see that people are getting off-target as they spend more and more time talking about holiday trips, parties, and presents, gently remind them about expectations and upcoming deadlines. This is often all that they need to hear in order to shift their focus back to where it needs to be.
Be flexible about alternate schedules or work from home requests
If you have a lot to get done and can see that your employees are feeling burnt out, consider offering the opportunity for them to set their own schedules or work from home. This can help to ease tension as they feel more in control of their schedule and can work in a way that’s convenient for them. This helps to keep morale high. Just make sure to hold each team member accountable and to keep communication consistent.
How do you help your employees to fight stress during the holiday season? Let us know in the comments!