Four Ways to Keep Employees on Track During the Holiday SeasonHolidays are a time of distraction for employees. They are often overloaded as they try to combine personal goals such as shopping, traveling, and family gatherings with work goals such as finishing all projects before the holiday break.

Amy Levin-Epstein of CBS News spoke with Allan Steinmetz, CEO and founder of Inward Strategic Consulting about how to keep your staff engaged and focused through the end of the year.

Offer a Flexible Schedule

Sometimes a little free time during a busy season is more valued than cash so during this time of year consider flexible scheduling. It allows employees to do their personal and work tasks with more ease, Levin-Epstein says.

Steinmetz suggests leaders offer once a week half-days for gift shopping, if you feel generous.

Plan Office Holiday Cheer

Organize a pot luck meal, Secret Santa events, or simple coffee and cake. It’s good for morale to acknowledge the season. To build your team together and build engagement through the New Year, bring them together.

Give Back                       

Steinmetz suggests leaders organize a team outing to volunteer at a local soup kitchen or shelter. Fit activities into your corporate schedule such as a can or toy drive. They can have a similar effect, and it doesn’t take away from the work day but it brings your team together.

And one more we’d like to add:

Avoid Launching New Projects

Most employees give all they have to finish what is on their plate by the time the end of the year rolls around. If you add new projects to their full plates, it can send people over the edge. Hold off on any new projects until after the first of the year, that way your employees return from their break refreshed and ready to go.

Business needs don’t stop just because it’s the holidays. As a leader it is difficult to balance the needs of the company and your employees. However, you need to make sure productivity flows throughout the year. Employ some or all of these methods to help maintain your employee productivity level during the holiday season.

Image credit: Artondra Hall