Autumn ushers in three unchangeable facts: the changing seasons, the start of football season, and Q3/Q4 employee burnout. With the year ending, it can often be challenging for employers to keep their teams engaged and focused on delivering results. The number of challenges most employees have faced over the last two years only adds to potential burnout — in fact, according to a recent McKinsey and Company study, the voluntary quit rate is 25% higher than it was pre-pandemic.
This article discusses some best practices and tactics to keep your employees engaged and on target to deliver results as the year winds down.
Check in With Your Employees
How are your employees doing? How do you know? If your answer is based on a hunch or a feeling about your team’s morale, it is probably an excellent time for an employee engagement survey. For many reasons, employee engagement surveys serve as valuable tools to keep your team engaged and focused.
First, the survey gives you valuable information on the state of your team. It can help you identify pain points, uncover opportunities for collaboration, and find potential problems before they spiral out of control. Secondly, engagement surveys are key in creating a work culture where employees feel heard and respected. You build a healthier culture by engaging in dialogue with employees and allowing them to speak their minds (both positively and negatively). Happy employees are engaged employees, and this type of survey can go a long way toward improving morale.
However, it is important to take the survey results to heart. After the survey has been conducted and you have an opportunity to identify key areas of improvement, have an all-hands meeting to discuss the findings and your plans to improve. Then, follow through. Showing your employees you act based on their feedback is incredibly powerful. It goes a long way toward building trust.
Realign on Objectives
During yearly planning sessions, you probably identified the goals for your organization and developed a strategy for how to get there. But as we all know, goals often shift, budgets get adjusted, teams change, and over the course of two, four, or six months, the once-clear waters for your team’s objectives can get muddied. The home stretch of the year is a great time to refocus on your goals from the beginning of the year. Making sure your teams are aligned can help revitalize your employees and deliver results.
Double Down on Flexibility
The end of the year certainly marks several changes — including in your employees’ personal lives. Children head back to the classroom, school activities start up again, and there are a variety of meaningful holidays. While your channel undoubtedly has business objectives to meet, it is also essential to recognize that your employees may be dealing with busier schedules at home. By encouraging your employees to embrace a flexible schedule, you can help them fulfill both their work and personal duties — resulting in happier, more productive workers. Communicate clearly with your team your expectations around closing out the year and give them the flexibility they need to keep their work/life balance in check.
Plan Ahead for the Year to Come
Finally, the end of the year is a great time to start setting up your organization’s goals and objectives for 2023 and beyond. What does success look like for the next year, and how can your team start preparing now to hit the ground running? By giving your employees a clear path forward, you can motivate them to finish out 2022 strong and put them on firm footing to deliver sustainable results.