Tips to ensure your staff will return after the Christmas break

As businesses, we know that the Christmas break is important for employees and staff alike. Even the boss needs a break which will have them returning refr

As businesses, we know that the Christmas break is important for employees and staff alike. Even the boss needs a break which will have them returning refreshed and ready to continue the momentum of their work in the new year. 

But what happens when your employees don’t want to return after Christmas? This is a very real situation and particularly in today’s hiring market. If they aren’t happy, they won’t be enticed to come back to work. 

With that in mind, here are four tips to ensure your team will return to work after Christmas. 

Celebrate staff achievements at the Christmas party (and beyond!)

If your staff aren’t feeling like their contributions are valued, they’re far less likely to want to return to work or put in their best effort when they are at work. Take the opportunity at the Christmas party to put a spotlight on your team.

Don’t just go with the generic “you guys have all put in so much effort this year, we couldn’t run without you”, go into some specifics about your teams and the invaluable work they have done throughout the past year. You don’t necessarily have to take on a Christmas present or bonus to the thank you, but being quite generous in the Christmas party department might be a good idea!

Show that you care

Nobody likes a robot boss (although that might be kinda cool). Let your employees know that you are a human and that you care about them and their feels. A manager that cares about their employees and builds an actual connection with them, is more likely to have engaged employees. Success in creating this kind of bond with your employees lies in creating a comfortable space, opening the lines for consistent communication and putting emphasis on honest feedback and conversations, among many other points.

The most successful managers will know that their employees are people first and will nurture that aspect, whilst striving for high performance. Those aspects are huge in creating higher employee engagement and will ensure your team are motivated to come back to work after every break, not just the Christmas one!

Provide and prepare for the time off

Whether or not you’re enforcing a Christmas break by shutting down the office or not, be sure to make it known that your company has no problem granting leave over the Christmas break. We have all been part of a company before that has strongly discourages it or denied peoples leave after initially accepting the leave. Don’t be that company. 

Of course, you can’t be left in the lurch with no staff when you can’t shut down, so perhaps grant employees who don’t get to (or dont want to) take leave this year with something else. Maybe some extra paid leave days, the right to first pick of leave next Christmas or maybe a little bonus. Doing so is going to show your team that they are important and that their dedication is appreciated and rewarded. 

If you are shutting down over the Christmas season, this can still apply as lots of people like to tack on extra time to their break. So again, make sure you aren’t going to be understaffed and ensure the staff coming back on time are appreciated.

Conduct a staff survey

Now this is an excellent ongoing measure, but before the break, might be the best time to do one! By that, I don’t mean run a staff survey the day everyone clocks off. A couple weeks out is a great time to get a feel for how happy your staff are in their work. You can even steer it more towards this break if you like. 

For example, you might want to ask about their comfortability taking their accrued leave or whether they are optimistic of change at work in the new year. Their (anonymous) responses should give you an indication of whether or not you should expect some resignations and give you some ideas about changes you and the company can realistically make. 

The Christmas break is a time for your team members to recharge, relax, and prepare for the new year. If you and your team members can make sure that these tips are followed before and during the Christmas break, your team members will return more refreshed and ready to continue killing it at their job in the new year.

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