All the signs are there that it is happening this week and then a flurry of events will be happening the next few weeks.
The autumn snowstorms leaving a blanket of orange, brown, yellow and red on our lawns, the geese honking above in their V-formation and of course, the ads telling us the holidays are here.
As a business owner, it’s a good time to take a deep breath and count your blessings. Sometimes that may be a challenge to do, as operating a business can present day to day challenges. And sometimes, it may be more natural to be worried about the future than be present in the day.
And in the rush to go, go, go, we seldom take the moment to stop and just appreciate the little things.
Here are a few tips to make the holiday season a little more enjoyable.
- Give thanks. The words ‘thank you’ truly are magical. When you truly express thanks to a friend for lending a hand, a stranger for opening a door or a customer who has supported you through thick and thin, not only do you brighten their day but you also brighten your own. It’s easy to just expect people to do their jobs – but sometimes they need to hear the word “thank you” to know there are appreciated and know they matter. Study after study shows by extending kindness to one person, then they will do something kind for someone else and it continues.
- Show your appreciation. The holidays are a good time to acknowledge your employees and clients with a small token of appreciation. And it’s also good public relations for your business. It’s suggested you send holiday cards to all your clients. Some businesses give gifts – a tin of cookies, coffee or a bottle of wine – to their largest clients for their support. Don’t forget to do something for your employees. Even if money is tight, find a way to show your appreciation. It could be a card, bringing in coffee and doughnuts, allowing them to leave early one day to go holiday shopping – just do something. Trust us, we have worked for companies where the holidays went by without a thank you or any acknowledgement of appreciation and it’s not a good feeling.
- Take care of your health. Whether it’s through a company email or a staff meeting, present some easy tips and reminders for your employees to take care of their health. Encourage them to eat healthy, drink responsibly and get plenty of rest. Now is the time when the “bugs” hit and when your employees get sick, that leaves you scrambling for someone to fill in or puts the workload on less employees’ shoulders. Also remember, when your employees are overworked and tired, they are more likely to make mistakes. And in the long run, that ends up costing you more than it would to take care of your employees.
- Make your business festive – When your employees are working long hours, it may seem like they are missing the holiday festivities. Make your place of business a warm and cheerful place to be during the holidays. Flowers, candles, lights or a wreath are all inexpensive ways to add a little holiday cheer. If it works, play holiday music. By doing little things to boost employees moral, you will find they will be better workers.
- Celebrate – Before we know it, it will be January. And the long winter will begin. While we all have different faiths, beliefs, ideas … we all can take the time to celebrate each other, be kind to one another and give thanks for the little and big things in our life.
- Here’s wishing everyone a safe and happy holiday season.