7 ways to recharge and refresh your team for an awesome 2019 (even if it’s just you!)

You know the adage you are as strong as your weakest link.  Consider that you are as strong as your team is motivated…

When was the last time you did anything to motivate your team with something other than money?

Studies show that employees are as motivated by recognition and perks as they are with money and bonuses.

Here are 7 ways to recharge your team that are easy to implement and very very cost effective.

  1. Flexible hours. Allow your employees to suggest how they can make their hours more flexible.  I once had an employee who wanted to be home when her kids got home from school.  We worked out an arrangement that she came in and started working at 7am. Some organizations work longer days so they can have half day Fridays, or Fridays off.  Allowing your team members to participate in the decision will go a long way to establishing loyalty and increase productivity.

  2. Take essential breaks.  Morning, lunch and afternoon breaks can go a long way to improving morale, productivity and creativity.  This may be challenging at first, but stick to your guns because the increased output will be beneficial to you and the team.  Here are some ideas to encourage:

    1. Social media breaks– if you designate a time when your employees can check their social media, they will be less tempted to try to “steal” the time.

    2. Lunch break– sounds so obvious, but too many of us eat at our desks while trying to answer emails.  Use your lunch time to recharge by listening to a book on tape, to a podcast or watch a TED Talk.

    3. Meditation break.  It’s been scientifically proven that breathing and meditation improve overall health.  Allow for and encourage designated 15 minutes of quiet time.

  3. Integrate Wellness Programs. Let your team members know how important their health is to you.  Encourage annual check ups and give incentives to get them done such as a bonus day off for their annual physical so they don’t have to use a personal day.  Consider reimbursing team members for gym memberships and personal trainers. Check out this video around the 7 minute mark for an easy stretch you can do right at your desk.  We also invite you to check out this Pinterest board all about Women’s Health and Fitness – we keep adding to it so check back often!

  4. Give abundant Praise & Recognition.  Consider recognizing your employees daily, weekly or monthly.  Use your social media and website to recognize your team members.  Highlight them in your newsletters and marketing materials. And most importantly– ask them how they want to be recognized!  Read The 5 Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace — learn which language speaks to which of your team members so you don’t make the mistake of giving public recognition to someone who is shy and would prefer time off. Go beyond your own team and recognize/highlight exceptional clients and their teams.  This will be great marketing, it will promote loyalty and be of interest to potential clients.

  1. Personal and Professional training dollars.  Reimburse your team for classes.  Consider personal development in a broad sense to include gym memberships, trainers, art classes and more.  Professional development reimbursements can include industry and professional memberships, classes and subscriptions.

  2. Quarterly employee reviews.  This helps you and your team stay on top of goals and assignments.  This also allows you and your team to fail fast. Did you know that some companies actually have “failure parties”?  They celebrate ideas that fail because they see them as lessons learned. This way they encourage innovation without repercussions.  If you give an annual bonus, consider dividing the amount by quarter and awarding the bonus four times per year instead of at the end of the year.

  3. Innovation.  The sky’s the limit when it comes to innovation.  How about brainstorming sessions? Set aside one day per quarter when your team will do team building and brainstorming.  It’s preferable to do this offsite with no distraction. I was part of an exercise many years ago where we were divided into four teams:

    1. One looked at the company’s history and each person was asked to come up with one way to honor or update the history.

    2. One team was asked to gather client stories that spoke to the company culture and come up with ways to find more similar clients.

    3. Another team looked at the company’s logo and determined how the elements, colors and look of the logo reflects the business.

    4. The fourth team came up with a company song.

It’s a new year and a new opportunity to make sure that you have the right people on your team.  A mentor of mine suggests that we surround ourselves with people who are our “assignment”– they are part of our close circle because we have been assigned to help them, or they have been assigned to help us. Either way, we have a duty of care.

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G. Nancy Allen is an international speaker, coach, consultant and expert on women’s business issues. Nancy has over 30 years of experience helping small business owners at all stages of growth. As President and CEO of WBDC Florida/Her Company Incorporated, Nancy manages and leads an incredible team of staff, sponsors, partners and women business leaders who are dedicated to certifying, connecting and championing women in business. Nancy has been recognized for her work on behalf of women in business through numerous prestigious awards: -Nancy was recently honored by the International Career and Business Alliance (ICABA) as one of South Florida’s 100 most accomplished Caribbean Americans. She is especially proud of this award because it highlights her heritage as well as her professional accomplishments. -Nancy is the recipient of the World Women Leadership Achievement Award from the World Women Leadership Congress -Nancy is also the proud recipient of the Association Marketing Award from Women in ECommerce. -Most recently Nancy was named Honorary Ambassador of Cascais, Portugal by the Ambassador’s Club of the Industry Sector of Cascais and the Estoril Coast. Nancy’s personal motto is Connections, Creativity and Courage in all endeavors. She holds a Master’s Degree from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS, 1982). She was born in Haiti and raised in South Florida. Nancy is bi-lingual in English and French and is fluent in Spanish and Creole.