Office Holiday Survival Tips
It's a real shame that people don't enjoy their jobs more. We're doing all right, as The Alias Group has great morale, unless everyone's constantly lying about how much they like their jobs. We really hope they're not doing that, because that would make this whole article moot.
Let's operate under the assumption that Alias employees aren't spitting falsehoods about enjoying their jobs through gritted teeth. That'd mean our benevolent corporate overlords have stumbled on some good office practices that keep people coming back. Which would also mean we have a few tips for you to boost office morale this holiday season.
Some of them might seem like no-brainers, but we're constantly surprised by companies' unwillingness to put the effort in.
Does Your Office Show It's the Holidays?
This is decorating at its most basic. If an employee comes into your office, can they even tell it's the winter holiday season? Or have you completely forgotten to do anything to change the scenery?
We're not saying you have to go all out and buy a Jewish reindeer that sings Kwanza songs and travels the office on a mistletoe float distributing eggnog and menorahs, tinseling the crap out of any hanging surface, but there should be something to indicate the time of year is special.
Buy a few poinsettias and put them up next to the entranceway. Have a dreidel and a bowl of chocolate coins on the conference room table. Hang some holly around offices and cubicles. Provide holiday drinks and snacks in the break room. Go big and put a Christmas tree in the main space.
Offices can be depressingly sterile spaces no one looks forward to visiting, so mitigate that with some genuine holiday decorations. You'll be amazed at how much happier people are to come to work if you've brought a little greenery to the place.
And don't think dollar store decorations are the same thing. If anything, seeing a few cheap, limp paper streamers sticking out of ceiling tiles is only going to upset people more. Put some effort in and reap the rewards.
Are You Having a Holiday Party?
Sitcoms, movies, books, and real life have all thoroughly explored the hackneyed idea that an office party is an obligation to suffer through, not a party to enjoy. Frankly, that's some bull, because we've been to plenty of office parties that didn't consist of coworkers trying to slog through small talk.
Combat boring holiday parties by changing the scenery. Host it somewhere your employees and coworkers don't spend their 9 to 5 every day. No matter how big or small your town, city, suburb, or commune is, there's a dining establishment nearby that'd be the perfect venue for your holiday jamboree.
Offices that simply buy a cake from the grocery store and call it a Christmas, makes the lack of effort demoralizing.
Bringing your employees to an off-site party can be an eye opening experience. We've known stuffy law firm workers that turn into great partygoers when everyone gets to the venue. Being out of the office gets everyone to loosen up and be more comfortable, which means your holiday party is predisposed to boost morale.
Will Your Employees Even Get a Holiday?
This one is a little harder to make happen as not everyone has the option to close up shop for a week or longer. There are some industries where shutting down completely for a week or two might bring about a small armageddon.
But for offices and firms that can afford it, make sure your employees can spend time with loved ones during the holidays. Nothing ruins a Christmas morning like knowing you have to be back at the office the next day or heading to your retail shift at the crack of dawn.
On the flipside of that, nothing solidifies an excellent Christmas like knowing you get to spend Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, the 26th, and possibly beyond relaxing with your family and friends. There's no specter of employment present hanging over your holiday, so you can be fully engaged in your holiday activities.
Besides, it's proven your employees will be happier and healthier with more vacation time. They'll come back refreshed, recharged, and (hopefully) eager to get back to work. Productivity will increase. Morale will increase. The economy will improve. These are all good things.
And we've been talking a lot about Christmas, but that's just because that's what we're gearing up for. Make sure you accommodate employees of other faiths or systems as well. Everyone deserves to have a guiltless, work-free holiday season, regardless of what they celebrate. Plus, if everyone knows their own holiday will be respected, they're far more likely to help fill in the gaps when it comes to the holidays of other people. Which is a great way to promote team building. Look at that, another tip, just popping up naturally.