This year has been emotionally and mentally taxing on everyone, especially those in the special events industry who have seen their business decline with live events being postponed or—worse—cancelled. Looking ahead to 2021 comes with mixed feelings of both hope and uncertainty, so it’s understandable if you and your team are starting to lose steam as we approach the end of the year.
Planning ahead, however, can be a refreshing and rewarding endeavor, as it sends home the reminder that this current situation is temporary—there is a brighter future ahead and it’s essential that we continue to move forward and put our businesses in the best position to succeed in a post-pandemic landscape.
If you and your team are feeling the effects of burnout, consider these practices to boost morale and bring some fresh energy into the workplace. Your employees—and your bottom line—will thank you for it.
Schedule time for fun
It’s important to remember life outside of work, especially for teams that are fully virtual at this point in time. With team lunches and office antics off the table for now, it’s a leader’s responsibility to keep the team engaged with one another outside of professional responsibilities.
Consider hosting virtual happy hours on a weekly basis or look into one of the many Airbnb experiences for a unique and fun bonding session. This serves as a way to lift the morale of the team, while also giving each employee an outlet for enjoyment.
Be flexible with schedules
Between working from home and managing childcare (or virtual school), most people’s schedules look vastly different from how they did last year. As a result, we need to be more understanding with schedule changes; the situation isn’t ideal for anyone, but it should be a team effort to get through it together.
Instead of requiring set hours from everyone, allow them the freedom to create their own schedule within some flexible parameters (like a set number of hours each day or certain office hours for everyone to be online).
Implement one-on-one check-ins
Working remotely isn’t an excuse to stop regular check-ins with employees; if anything, these consultations are more important than ever. Instead of focusing solely on work responsibilities, make some time in each meeting to discuss your employees’ personal lives. Ask how they’re doing emotionally and mentally so you can get in front of any potential burnout instead of finding out too late.
If you start to notice fatigue creeping up on a team member, see how you can shift their tasks and offer them an afternoon off. Don’t consider this as lost time, but rather an investment in your employee’s wellbeing that allows them to come back more productive and motivated.
Take advantage of technology
If your team is feeling weighed down by small, menial tasks, it might be time to consider virtual solutions to take those responsibilities off their plates (and your own!). Use this season to try out new apps and digital tools, so you’ll be well-experienced when business picks up again. Something as simple as a social media scheduler or an appointment scheduling program could make all the difference in your team’s workload.
Burnout is not something to be tested; it risks the health of your team members, yourself, and your business. Worse still, burnout can become contagious, so it’s important to be proactive with these practices and look for early signs that can signal you to caution. At the end of the day, you can make up for a few lost hours far easier than losing an employee who’s lost their enthusiasm for their work (or even losing your own passion).