Keeping Employees Engaged Around the Holidays

Maddie Davis guest
Dec 12, 2018

The holidays are an exciting and busy time for everyone. While it’s easy to get caught up in the celebratory spirit, the need for keeping business on track remains. Creating a pleasant environment for your employees is always a priority, but it’s especially important during the distracting holiday season. As people are likely to be more productive when they’re happy, implementing employee engagement best practices can keep your team in good spirits while also achieving company goals. Here are a few tips to kick off your most productive holiday season yet!

Here are a few tips to kick off your most productive holiday season yet!


Between PTO, flexible hours and shortened weeks, schedules are often a bit of a jumble around the holidays. Effective communication amongst your team is essential during this time. Keeping everyone informed of any changes in responsibilities while co-workers are out on PTO will make for smoother transitions. Informative and consistent communication is one of the key drivers of employee engagement as no one likes to feel out of the loop.

Utilize PTO

Depending on your companies PTO policy, the holidays are often a popular time for using saved up time off. Encouraging employees to utilize their PTO during this especially hectic time of the year will not only benefit them but you as well. Studies show people who take time off around the holidays have lower levels of stress and are able to better prioritize their well-being. Having the peace of mind that they will have plenty of time to enjoy their families and finish any last minute errands will aid in making employees last days in the office more productive. Reminding your employees of this and reiterating that you welcome them taking the time they need, will keep them mentally healthy and therefore more productive at work.

Show Appreciation

Between the pressure of the holidays and work responsibilities, employees are likely to feel more stressed this time of year. Showing a little extra appreciation for their hard work and commitment to the company can make a big difference, helping to avoid a disengaged and unmotivated workforce. While employers should regularly thank employees for a job well done, the holidays are a great time to go the extra mile. Try writing personal holiday cards to everyone, reminding them of your acknowledgement of all they do.


Cookies, candies and other unhealthy dishes are nearly unavoidable around the holidays. While delicious, too much sugar can leave employees mentally and physically sluggish and unable to focus. To help balance out the sweets, treat employees to a healthy array of snacks in the kitchens and break rooms leading up to holiday break. Nutrient rich foods like fresh fruit, raw veggies, nuts, and granola bars are all good options for boosting energy and showing a little extra appreciation for your employees.


With the holiday spirit in the air, it’s easy to get distracted thinking about after work celebrations and events. Building off that excitement and engaging your employees with a little reward for a job well done can keep the offices vibes positive and motivating. Organizing an office-wide potluck for example offers a nice break in the middle of a stressful day and gives employees a chance to enjoy each others company. Hosting a contest on production and goal achievements to ensure you finish the year strong can also be a fun way to use the holiday to your benefit.

Plan for next year

Preparing for the year ahead can be a wonderfully inclusive way of engaging employees. Whether it be setting new client goals or planning your next CSR initiatives, encouraging employees to share their thoughts helps to keeping everyone engaged and focused on the business at hand.

The energy surrounding the holiday season is unmatched. Making the most of your teams excitement and positive attitudes can make a notable difference in your company’s culture. Putting in a little extra effort to keep employees engaged with these recommendations will prove beneficial to both office moral and business goals. Happy holidays!

Maddie Davis
Co-founder at Enlightened Digital
Maddie Davis is co-founder of Enlightened Digital and a tech-obsessed female from the Big Apple. She lives by building and redesigning websites, running marathons, and reading anything and everything on the NYT Best Sellers list.
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