Don’t be a holiday HR Scrooge


Dec. 9. Business owners and managers may see increased stress levels among employees around the holidays. We all know they can be stressful, and sometimes the stress shows up at work. You might not have any control over what happens at home, but you can help team members to remain focused and productive at work.

Erin Lau, human resources manager at Insperity, a professional employer organization, offers the following tips for leaders:

Schedule flexibility

Between balancing work deadlines and personal commitments, employees may have more on their plate during the holiday season. Managers can offer breaks to allow time for employees to accomplish personal tasks. Additionally, some companies may offer floating holidays, opportunities to work remote or even implement a shorter work week.

Plan for more PTO

Employers should prepare for an increase in paid time off (PTO) requests. Leaders should ensure their organization has clear guidelines for requesting time off and that all employees are aware of related policies. These should include directions for submitting PTO requests, as well as cover expectations related to accessibility  while away from the office.

Refocus deadlines

Keeping employees focused while competing with holiday distractions isn’t always easy. To ensure all tasks are completed on schedule, managers should meet with staff to prioritize projects and set realistic deadlines. Setting shorter deadlines than usual can also help keep team members engaged and productive.

Consider daytime parties

While holiday parties can be a great way to encourage team building, they can add stress. Think about hosting a holiday lunch during business hours rather than scheduling an evening or weekend event. Cool ideas include an office potluck or participating in a community service activity during office hours.


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