It's not uncommon for employees to feel stressed when returning to work after a holiday. Coming down off the high of a vacation and back to an inbox filled with questions and responsibilities may overwhelm some people and reduce or even negate the benefits of the time off. As an employer, you can do a few things to help staff members shake the post-holiday blues.
Encourage Time Management
Reduce stress before and after a vacation by using time management strategies. Draw up a list and include everything employees should take care of before they leave. Once they return, itemize responsibilities by order of importance. Providing a checklist often makes a workload seem lighter and may encourage an employee to be more productive.
Avoid Unrealistic Expectations
While you may have missed your employees while they were gone, it’s important to give them a few days to get reacclimated to the schedule. Ensure they have time to answer emails, catch up on daily tasks and address essential inquiries before hitting them with a new responsibility. By providing employees with a little space when they come back, you’re likely to induce a more relaxed, happy atmosphere.
Also, encourage periodic breaks throughout the day for all employees. Let those coming back from a vacation share pictures and reminisce about their time away. It's all part of helping them ease gradually back into the work routine without feeling guilty about taking time off.
Offer Training and Development
Workers who feel like they're in a slump after taking a holiday may need a little encouragement to stay productive. Consider a professional development day to provide employees with training and learning opportunities. This helps refocus their attention in a structured and positive way.
Ease Financial Burdens
When vacations are over, you’ll have the perfect opportunity to review the company options for savings, including retirement plans. Host a financial wellness workshop or offer a budget-planning seminar, particularly useful exercises given that the winter holiday season is just around the corner. Be sure to stay on top of employee evaluations and provide raises and bonuses where they're merited.