It’s Monday, and the word has a slightly (more) bitter tinge to it when it follows a long weekend. Canada Day in the Okanagan was a celebratory success, with festivities and fun ranging from car shows and acrobatics to musical performances and fireworks. For those of us lucky enough to take the weekend off, it was summer’s most popular excuse for three days of rest and relaxation.
And for those of us back to the grind this morning, it can be summer’s toughest day to refocus. Leading a team on the mend from a long weekend can be a challenge, especially when there’s actual work to be done. Here’s a few simple tips to motivate your group and get things back on the right track.
1. Share stories – If your employees went zip-lining and are dying to talk about it, let them. Allowing some space for reliving the events of the previous days vents that excitement so that there is an opportunity to mentally move forward (and, no, this doesn’t mean you have to share all the details of your own adventures).
2. Set specific goals – Help your staff define clear goals for the upcoming week and strategize how to accomplish these goals. Make sure the tasks are challenging, but don’t overwhelm them right off the bat. Prioritize and structure things so that they feel manageable and engaging.
3. Create some competition – Everyone enjoys games, and giving your team opportunities to compete against one another to solve a problem or complete an assignment adds a spark to any undertaking. Consider rewards for something tactile to chase after, but make sure you are transparent about all incentives.
4. Host a brainstorming session – Getting your crew together talking and sharing ideas is not only an opportunity for reinforcing a united atmosphere, but also a great way to get creative juices flowing. Brainstorming sessions can make individuals feel like their ideas are valued and that they are an important part of the team, motivating their efforts.
5. Promise something good – Give your employees something to look forward to so they can refocus on the future. Plan for an event or activity soon that they can eagerly anticipate, taking some of the sting out of the end of the party.
Not everyone in your organization will have had an unforgettable weekend, but it was a weekend nonetheless, so momentum will need a kick start. Just remember that, as a leader, it is important to set the example. Come in to work with a clear head and enthusiasm and this will inevitably catch on. Workers want to be engaged with their tasks, so give them the opportunity and encouragement to do so. It will pay back in dividends.