10 Ways to Motivate Your Employees During the Winter Season

The cold, dreary winter months are never good for productivity. What is one suggestion you have for how leaders can keep their teams motivated and productive, regardless of the weather?

Office colleagues during winter season
photo credit: RODNAE Productions / Pexels

These answers are provided by the Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), an invitation-only organization made up of the world’s most successful young entrepreneurs. YEC members represent nearly every industry, generate billions of dollars in revenue annually and have created tens of thousands of jobs. More information at yec.co.

1. Implement fun contests with rewards

If you’re a leader struggling to keep your team motivated during the winter months, consider implementing some fun challenges with rewards. This will help them stay in a competitive frame of mind and hopefully increase productivity. Whatever you choose, make sure there’s something at stake that everyone can get excited about.

– Adam Preiser, WPCrafter

2. Give them autonomy over their work

If you give your team some autonomy, they will surprise you with their drive and ambition. I try to create an environment where my employees are encouraged to take responsibility for their work, rather than just doing what I tell them. When they feel like they have a say in their own roles, they are much more likely to get up early in the morning and make sure they get things done!

– Brian Greenberg, insurer

3. Encourage the use of the PTO shaft

Winter is never a very productive time for employees. The cold makes most of us feel inefficient, even though we try to concentrate on our work. That’s why we encourage our employees to use their PTO. It’s a good way to help them break the monotony and reinvigorate themselves when they return.

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– Andrew Munro, AffiliateWP

Working from home
photo credit: Hean Prinsloo / Unsplash

4. Let the team work from home

In areas where winter can be brutal, companies can allow their employees to work remotely. This minimizes the hassle of commuting, which can be difficult during the winter season. The team can stay at home and remain productive. However, if the nature of your work does not allow you to operate remotely, keeping the workplace warm is the best way to keep your team motivated.

– Stephanie Wells, Formidable Shapes

5. Host a fitness challenge

Try organizing a fitness challenge. This can be as simple as tracking the number of steps each team member takes each day. Not only will a fitness challenge help keep team members physically active, but it will also help improve their mood and mental well-being. Studies have shown that regular exercise can help improve cognitive function, reduce stress levels and increase overall happiness.

– Sujay Pawar, CartFlows

6. Encourage discussion about personal goals

One of the best ways to improve team spirit and keep everyone motivated during the winter months is to encourage your employees to discuss their personal goals during meetings and in your company chat channel. People often feel inspired and productive when they talk about the things that matter to them. If you can get their attention this way, you can expect a noticeable morale boost.

– Chris Christoff, MonsterInsights

7. Organize virtual team building activities

Consider incorporating online team building activities, such as a virtual happy hour or an online game night. Virtual team building is the buzz this year in this hybrid work culture. Be personal and learn more about your team’s lives and their daily family challenges. This will help them feel a touch of warmth and a sense of appreciation from you. Meet with your team virtually every week this winter.

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– Kelly Richardson, Infobrandz

Gift for employees

8. Offer incentives for good performance

One idea is to offer incentives for good performance, especially during the winter months. Some possible incentive ideas include paid time off, gift cards or a bonus payout. While this may seem like a normal idea, the main difference is that it relates to the “down” season. Employees might come to associate gray skies with new opportunities.

–Blair Williams, MemberPress

9. Get festive

Winter is all about parties and holidays, so make sure your employees feel that atmosphere every day when they walk into the office. For example, during Halloween you can decorate the office in Halloween style all week and have everyone dress accordingly. This gives a festive tone to the environment and motivates people to be active and lively.

– Thomas Griffin, OptinMonster

10. Make their workday easier

An often overlooked way to keep your employees engaged is to make their workday easier. Introducing workflow automation during the darker, slower months is a great way to take the pressure off your team as their personal lives start to become more demanding during the holidays. Take a look at the manual tasks that are slowing down your team’s day and invest in freeing them up.

– Daniel Voskin, Aesthetics and Plastic Surgery Goals

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