Has it been one of those years?

You may have been so busy you have been neglecting relationships with your staff or your peers. If business has been tough you may just want the bad year to end! Alternatively you may feel your team or some members of your team have disengaged and you’re struggling to get them back. Whatever your year, the Festive Season provides a great opportunity to mix it up a bit and build some bonds with your team that will see you through the holiday season and beyond.

1. Lighten up

Have you tended to be the serious one? If so… there are many reasons why.  It could be your level in the organisation and the pressure it brings.  It could be the way you cope amidst change.  Alternatively the job you do is a formal/compliant one and it comes with the territory.  Regardless, being overly serious affects all around you. Someone makes a joke with you and you bring them back in line.  In so doing you don’t realise but a bond has been broken.

My best advice is lighten up!  Show you have a lighter side. Talk and banter with the team. While they’ll wonder what’s got into you… keep at it.  Strained relationships will subside and silence will be replaced with happy chatter. You’ll feel better, as will your team.

2. Decorate

If you’re in an industrial or office setting, the surrounds can be pretty dull. Decorate the office. Get some tinsel, beads, baubles and brighten up the space.  It’s been scientifically proven that colour affects people’s emotions. Blues, greens and silvers are calming while golds, yellows, pinks and reds are energising!  Whether you want to bring calm or energy to your team both send good vibes to lift morale.

3. Celebrate

Whether it’s been a good year or not – celebrate!

Celebrate achievements!

Celebrate the little wins!

Celebrate survival!

Celebrate your team!

Just celebrate!!

You can do formal lunches and dinners, or awards nights or head out for an experience, alternatively you can contribute time to a Christmas Charity. Whatever the mode, everyone comes back feeling better, better about themselves, their team and the company. It is these bonds that your team will remember and bring them back in the New Year.

4. Deliberate

Christmas allows for pause and reflection.  As the year comes to a close, consider the year that’s been.  Have your team do the same.  Think of what worked and where the wins were.  Delve into why.  Can this be leveraged?  What should you do more of next year? Additionally look at the clangers! What failed for you? Why? Could you have done anything differently to control the outcome? If so identify the change that needs to be made to turn this around next year. If outside of your control..let it go! So many people get themselves in a tizz over issues that are entirely out of their hands. Realise and have your team realise this. It’s liberating letting things go.

By having this deliberation period the team comes together.  Through communication, contribution, cooperation, collaboration as well as sharing, learning, coaching and supporting there is a galvanising force that is created and will remain.

5. Activate

There’s nothing better than having the Action Plan ready for the new year.

You’ve had your time to ponder and focus on what to stop, start and continue next year.  Now put this in overdrive.

What are you going to focus on the minute you get back?

Again get your team together – have a corporate or team plan and then have each individual map what their contribution will be to this goal.

This brings energy and inspiration. Team members will no longer be thinking “Thank God the year’s over” instead they’ll be enthused by what’s in store for the year ahead.

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