It’s been another unpredictable year, but we’re now nearing the end!
As this year’s holidays draw nearer, whether your team is working from the office or from home, there’s no shortage of things that you should be doing to ensure that the year ends on a high for everyone.
A sure-fire way to achieve this is through rewards and employee recognition that not only helps everyone to get into the spirit of the holiday season but also to express your gratitude for your team’s hard work and commitment throughout the course of what has been a turbulent year—perhaps not as turbulent as recent years past but still eventful enough!
The Importance of Employee Recognition
One of the most notable events of the year has been the continuance of the so-called ‘Great Resignation’, with more and more employees quitting their jobs out of dissatisfaction in search of better opportunities. Some organizations have been seriously struggling to wrangle with this and fill the holes left by former employees.
To that extent then, there has never been a more important time than now to ensure that your employees know and feel that they’re valued. By putting in some effort over the holiday season, you can go a long way to boosting morale, improving engagement, and encouraging your most talented people to stay.
Workplace holiday activities not only help to foster connections and improve employee morale but, for some employees who don’t have the privilege of being close to their family or having lots of friends, they represent a rare chance to socialize. This can make a huge difference and make the holidays more meaningful.
Sure, employee recognition and workplace holiday activities aren’t a quick fix for every internal problem, but they don’t do any harm, either. At the end of the day, higher engagement means less burnout, better mental health, higher morale, and greater overall job satisfaction.
5 Ways to Engage Employees During the Holidays
Now that we’ve covered why employee engagement and recognition during the holidays are important, let’s take a look at some of the things that you can do to share your gratitude.
1. Deck the Office
If you’re working from the office, what better way to lift spirits than to throw up a Christmas tree and other decorations? It’s amazing how much a little bit of tinsel here and there coupled with a few baubles can entirely change the atmosphere of a room and drum up excitement for the holidays.
Even better yet, you could consider decorating the office and creating an annual tradition of it, where your team comes together to put up decorations and add their own touch to the workplace.
2. Host an Awards Ceremony
People love to be awarded and rewarded for their hard work and effort, so why not host a Christmas awards ceremony? Couple this with a few drinks and takeout food in the office and you’re on to a winner! It doesn’t need to be an expensive affair, after all.
Awards can be a great way to engage staff and let them know that you value the hard work that they’ve put in during the year. To make it all the more fun, resist making these awards entirely target-based and instead include some that are more light-hearted and unrelated to work.
3. Classic Secret Santa
A slightly more obvious Christmas tradition is Secret Santa, a great way to bring your employees across different teams together. Again, it doesn’t need to be an expensive or complicated affair.
Set a small spending limit of around $5 to $10 so that everyone can take part, put everyone’s names into a hat, have everyone draw a name, and then set a date for the gifts to be exchanged.
4. Have an Office Christmas Feast
Write down all of the usual Christmassy foods on pieces of paper and then get your team to pick them out of a hat. Then pick a date for everyone to bring in their food (extra points if it’s homemade!) and you’ve got yourself a miniature office feast.
Throw a bit of competitive energy into the mix by getting your team to mark each dish out of ten and give everyone a little bit of extra encouragement to go the extra mile and bring in some great food!
5. Send Personalized Christmas Cards
You shouldn’t ever write off the little simple things because they can make the biggest difference, and things don’t get much simpler than a good old-fashioned Christmas card.
Although sending out a generic Christmas card to employees isn’t really going to have an impact, putting in the time and effort to write a personalized, thoughtful card that genuinely expresses gratitude can go a very long way.
Keep Everything Organized with a Planning Committee
It’s obviously the case that engaging your employees and showing them that they’re valued shouldn’t be a once-a-year occurrence that’s reserved for Christmas. It should be an ongoing effort that you’re constantly building on and improving with time.
However, as we’ve covered, Christmas is the time when any efforts you make will have the most profound impact. The colder mornings, darker days, and general lethargy surrounding the winter months can put a real downer on some people’s moods and make it hard to feel motivated.
If you’re a leader, you should certainly be using the holiday season as an excuse to lift spirits and go the extra mile to make your team happier, more engaged, and feel more valued. This could be difficult to do on your own though, especially if you lead a larger team, so consider putting together a committee of die-hard fans of the holiday season—no pun intended, we promise—to keep things running smoothly.
In fact, why not go the extra mile and use your organizational chart to map out this committee so that you’ve got a reference point for individual tasks, responsibilities, and ideas? That way, everything is in one place.
This is something you can do in Organimi by creating a new ‘department’ and assigning employees from any team who are helping to plan your holiday events. Our intuitive drag-and-drop chart builder makes this a very quick and straightforward task, and you can get going in minutes.