car dealership employees holidays

Avoid Post-Holiday Blues and Boost Employee Morale

Written By Carol Marshall

I hate to be the one to say it, but (once again) the holidays are practically over. The excitement of gift-giving and receiving dies down, and we forget about the famous annual ball-drop.

As you go back to your daily routine, it’s important not to lose momentum. Leverage the holiday atmosphere to kick off the new year on the right foot!

Here are three ways you can avoid the post-holiday blues and boost dealership employee morale:

Have a holiday recap meeting.

A post-holiday team meeting can be an excellent time to de-stress by allowing your staff to recap how the holidays went both at home and at work.

Ask your team to bring in some leftover goodies (you know the ones I’m talking about!) as kind of a last hurrah before you dive into the new year. Then have everyone share what they did on their time off and what their favorite part of the holidays was.

By reflecting on how great the past few weeks went, your team will see how those days off with friends and family gave them time to rest. Then, you can use this momentum to provide them with a good old-fashioned “New Year, New Dealership” pep-talk.

Help them accomplish a new year’s resolution.

We know that New Year’s resolution #1 is usually a variation of losing weight, eating right, or taking better care of our bodies. So, why not help your team accomplish that by incorporating healthy practices into your dealership’s routine?

Keep in mind that your staff will include people with a variety of likes and dislikes, as well has different fitness levels -- you don’t want to make anyone feel bad or left out. So try to think of creative ways to accommodate all your employees.

Here are a few examples:

  • Join a league of office sports teams like kickball or basketball
  • Provide corporate discounts to fitness classes
  • Have free healthy snack options in the break room
  • Start a jogging group that exercises together before or after work hours

The point is to help your employees help themselves -- which will inherently serve your dealership. The added benefits of leading a healthier lifestyle will improve their performance at work. It will keep your staff safer from getting “that bug going around,” it will boost their energy, improve their self-esteem -- and increase their productivity!

Now, about those leftover goodies at the recap meeting….how about some tasty fruit and green tea instead?

Lead them by example.

As a manager and leader, your team will look to you for guidance and motivation, which is why your mindset should be confident, encouraging, and positive -- especially if you want to start 2015 off with a bang!

It all boils down to showing your staff that you can not only talk the talk -- but also walk the walk. I recently read an Entrepreneur article on leading by example, in which the author expresses the importance of INSPIRING others to follow you, instead of merely telling them to.

So how exactly can you lead by example and motivate your employees this new year? Here are a few ways:

  1. Try your hardest to keep your word. Delivering on your promises will build your credibility as a leader -- especially when you’re in a position where your actions can potentially affect the dealership’s bottom line.
  1. Hold yourself accountable for your actions. Acknowledge failures as a part of development. This will show your resilience, and make it okay for your team to learn from their mistakes.
  1. Create solutions to problems. When your employees come to you with work-related issues, offer them your wisdom and knowledge. By showing them you are a problem-solver, you are teaching your staff to be problem-solvers too.
  2. Roll up your sleeves. Not only is this the right thing to do, but it’s also effective. Employees will respect leaders who can share in the sacrifices they ask others to make -- the ones who aren’t afraid to practice what they preach.

In the end...

Try to remember that the holidays bring a whirlwind of emotions like excitement and anxiety. So returning to the usual routine -- and probably a much quieter workplace -- is inevitably going to dampen some spirits.

Be understanding of your employees. Don’t become frustrated when some employees are a bit lagged in spirits. As a leader, you must ensure you set reasonable and achievable goals for your team’s motivation and performance. Set high, but sensible standards of excellence -- then help your staff achieve it!


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