How to keep your team inspired throughout January

Motivating your team in the New Year pays dividends and may help with employee retention at a time when many will start their search for a new job.  Below we list our eight tips for winter wellbeing in the workplace.

We’re into the second working week of the year with ‘Blue Monday’ fast approaching. The festive celebrations are over, detox diets are already painful to keep up and credit card bills for Christmas and New Year excesses are hitting our pockets. January pay day seems a long way off and journeys to work are taking longer than normal due to tube/rail strikes and road accidents. Then there’s the persistent cold and cough that’s been doing the rounds.

The reality of the full year ahead begins to dawn……

Depending on your industry and business, January may be a very busy month that spurs your team into action immediately on their return to work. In other cases January may be quiet enabling a review of last year, planning for 2017 and six-monthly/annual appraisals to be conducted.

Either way, how do you inspire your team in the dark, cold days of January to ensure they remain productive, focused and on target to meet objectives?


Eight Top Tips for Winter Wellbeing in the Workplace

  • Counter negative news stories
    These will be in abundance in the press and on social media, but it is suggested you frame the New Year well by communicating the opportunities and challenges positively to your team rather than highlighting potential issues.
  • Engage with each member of your team
    Be mindful of the fact that your motivators are probably very different to those of each of your team. What are their daily rituals? Have they made any New Year resolutions?Some may well need a caffeine infusion to kick start their day while others may practice yoga before work and prefer a green tea. If any of your colleagues received Fitbits for Christmas, maybe suggest that a few of you take a brisk walk around the block at lunchtime. In fact, encouraging all your employees to go outside during daylight hours for at least a few minutes per day during the winter months is a good idea anyway.If you have team members located regionally and you are not able to meet all of them face to face in the month of January, make a point to talk to them regularly this month so you can assess how they are feeling and operating - a great tip for wellbeing in the workplace.
  • Plan a social event
    Arrange a get-together away from the office for early Spring. It’s great to have something in the calendar that will get the team socialising once the lighter days arrive. Try involving the whole team in choosing and booking the activity to gain maximum buy-in.
  • Team lunch/breakfast
    Organise a team lunch or breakfast in the office. It is good for team engagement and doesn’t have to cost the earth. You could even ask everyone in the team to contribute something, which ensures a great selection and all members feel involved.
  • Holiday bookings
    Encourage your team to book holidays. Apart from the obvious attraction of them having something to look forward to, it enables you to manage operations and workflow efficiently if absence is planned in advance. If your holiday year finishes on 31st March and the team has holiday entitlement to use up, you’ll be able to ensure sufficient cover in that month.
  • Personal development training
    Even if it is not appraisal time in your organisation, pick up with your team on their personal development aspirations, get them to identify suitable opportunities and book courses/seminars. Doing something different, meeting new people and focusing the mind are all actions that help with wellbeing in the workplace.
  • Focus on priorities
    Irrespective of how busy January is for your organisation, sitting down with your people and reaffirming priorities for the next few weeks is vital. Over the leisurely festive break, it is easy for us to forget the odd thing that came up in conversation just before Christmas and for you to lose track of workloads, so a recap of priorities and deadlines is a good thing for everyone.
  • Celebrate successes
    Last, but by no means least. Don’t wait for an annual awards ceremony to thank you people and celebrate team successes. Recognise and reward your team on a regular basis. This acknowledgement doesn’t have to be an expensive gift, just a verbal ‘thank you’ in front of the whole team goes down well.And, don’t restrict it to work related successes. Knowing your team well, you’ll be aware when one of them is successful out of work too. If the individual is happy for you to do so, share that with the rest of the team. It’s very inspirational and may encourage others to start something new this year, which can also help with work/life balance.

So, there you have it. Some great tips for wellbeing in the workplace. Here’s to a great year!