Sur­viv­ing the silly sea­son

Tips to keep em­ploy­ees fo­cused, mo­ti­vated


I AM a hope­less ro­man­tic not just in my per­sonal life, but also in busi­ness.

The ur­ban dic­tio­nary de­scribes us as fol­lows:

Hope­less ro­man­tics have larger hearts than the rest of us and they get hurt more than the reg­u­lar per­son. A hope­less ro­man­tic is an eter­nal op­ti­mist.

They fall in love with ac­tiv­i­ties they do. They see them as liv­ing parts they need to cher­ish with the same care they would give an­other per­son.

We live in a time where it is hard to find peo­ple will­ing to give 100%.

Hope­less ro­man­tics will give more than 100%. And the ur­ban dic­tio­nary be­lieves they are one of the purest things left on this planet.

As an en­tre­pre­neur you have a vi­sion and grow­ing that vi­sion en­tails among other things re­cruit­ing a team to help you grow.

As we are fast ap­proach­ing the fes­tive sea­son you might have no­ticed that em­ploy­ees be­come com­pla­cent, dis­tracted, neg­li­gent and for the lack of a bet­ter word, “silly”.

Here are some tips to sur­vive the silly sea­son:

•Don’t let his­tory re­peat it­self:

Did pro­duc­tiv­ity suf­fer last year at this time? Iden­tify what went wrong and come up with vi­able so­lu­tions, seek­ing in­put from staff where ever pos­si­ble.

• Lead­ing by ex­am­ple:

Lead­er­ship is cru­cial to main­tain­ing pro­duc­tiv­ity dur­ing the silly sea­son.

If em­ploy­ees see their lead­ers stay­ing mo­ti­vated and work­ing hard to­wards achiev­ing goals, they will im­me­di­ately feel more mo­ti­vated to do the same. • Set­ting pre-fes­tive sea­son goals: Did your com­pany set fi­nan­cial-fo­cused, prod­uct-fo­cused, or other goals?

Re­mind your em­ploy­ees of what these goals were and as­sess whether you have achieved them.

Make sure goals are com­mu­ni­cated and in writ­ing, so that em­ploy­ees can re­fer to the list as and when nec­es­sary.

Re­ward­ing your em­ploy­ees for reach­ing goals keeps both mo­ti­va­tion and morale high, so why not try to im­ple­ment spe­cific in­cen­tives for achiev­ing spe­cific busi­ness goals.

• Creat­ing a pos­i­tive at­mos­phere:

Es­tab­lish­ing a pos­i­tive en­vi­ron­ment is an im­por­tant fac­tor in keep­ing em­ploy­ees mo­ti­vated.

This may in­volve al­low­ing the team to get into the spirit of the sea­son by dec­o­rat­ing their work space.

• Of­fer flex­i­ble hours:

Flex­i­ble sched­ul­ing makes em­ploy­ees more fo­cused on their work when they are in the of­fice.

This is es­pe­cially im­por­tant ahead of the hol­i­days, when staff are busy, not only with their work, but also at home with plan­ning hol­i­days and buy­ing gifts.

• Show ap­pre­ci­a­tion:

Globo­force’s Work­force Mood Tracker Re­port shows there is a demon­stra­ble link be­tween ac­knowl­edge­ment and mo­ti­va­tion, with 86% of em­ploy­ees say­ing that be­ing recog­nised mo­ti­vates them in their job.

Take a mo­ment to thank your em­ploy­ees for all their hard work through­out the year. This will make them feel ap­pre­ci­ated and em­pow­ered.

• And then what about you?

The en­tre­pre­neur. How do you stay mo­ti­vated?

I have been very for­tu­nate to be in­vited to Mar­garet Hirsch’s Woman of Worth (WOW) group.

I re­mem­ber re­ceiv­ing the in­vite on Jan­uary 8 at 1.42 pm, look­ing at the names of the other mem­bers in the group think­ing this must be a mis­take!

WOW has be­come my tribal coun­cil, as I like to re­fer to them, and sav­ing grace this year. Thank you, Mar­garet, for lov­ing hard and creat­ing a plat­form like WOW where en­trepreneurs can re­fuel.

As we en­ter a time of re­flec­tion, I would like you to think about the peo­ple you are go­ing to sur­round your­self with in 2019 and where you will re­fuel.

Wish­ing you hol­i­day cheer and a happy New Year.

• Alta Keyter is the owner of Mar­ket­ing Re­sults, which is based in Pi­eter­mar­itzburg and she is The Wit­ness’ monthly colum­nist on so­cial me­dia, mar­ket­ing, the In­ter­net and en­trepreneur­ship.

“... it is hard to find peo­ple will­ing to give 100%. Hope­less ro­man­tics will give more than 100%. And the ur­ban dic­tio­nary be­lieve they are one of the purest things left on this planet.”

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