Paper AirplaneCome January, your business will probably need a shot of adrenaline. Research suggests that, for many companies, productivity drops around the holidays, due in part to more employees taking sick days.

Without doubt, you’ll want to start the new year with a bang to make up for the lost output in December – but that’s easier said than done. Once the holiday season comes to a close, many of your workers may be suffering from a case of the back-to-the-grind blues. On top of this, they may also be distracted by the January surge in job opportunities and recruiter inquiries.

So, how you do quickly rejuvenate your workforce and get your employees back up to full productivity? Here are a few powerful tips:

1. Offer Performance Bonuses and Cash Incentives

Personal debt peaks in January, which means that a significant number of your employees will probably be feeling some financial pain during this time of year. It follows, then, that monetary incentives may be especially motivating.

Set out some tough – but achievable – productivity targets and offer a tantalizing January bonus for reaching those targets. In doing so, you’ll be offering just the right incentive at just the right time – a perfect storm for productivity.

2. Ramp Up Your Workforce Health Initiatives

Typically, the holiday season is a time of excess food and booze, and many workers may be feeling physically burnt out as a result. Instituting a special health and detox program during January could be a great way to encourage your employees to get back into top physical – and mental – shape.

Your program may include things like:

- subsidizing  gym memberships

-  arranging a charity sporting event

- supplying free fruit and other healthy foods

- or setting up a “New Year’s Health Challenge” with an enticing reward.

There are plenty of ways that you can support employee health in January, and given that exercise improves our mental functions, you’ll be doing the business a favor at the same time.

3. Help Your Employees Set New, Inspirational Goals

HandJanuary is one of the busiest months of the year for hiring, meaning many of your employees may catch wind of new job opportunities during this time of year. It’s up to you to swoop in before your top performers get snatched up.

Sit down with each employee and have a one-on-one chat about their goals and aspirations for the year ahead. Find out what motivates them, and then help them set goals they are passionate about. Then, find ways to support your employees as they work toward these goals.

For example, one employee may want to learn new programming skills. Perhaps you can pay for that employee to attend some courses on the subject?

Find out what each of your employees wants, inspire them to achieve their goals, and support them along the way. In doing so, you’ll keep their focus off the external job market and on your organization.

4. Set and Share Your Vision for the Year

Given all the new job opportunities that pop up in January, many of your employees will be acutely aware of the exciting visions of your competitors. Don’t let the grass appear greener on the other side. Make sure you have your own powerful vision for 2016 to keep employees engaged.

Hold a town hall meeting where you outline the vision, goals, events, and activities for your business in 2016. Get your employees excited about working for you! Show them that, in fact, the grass is greener here – not out there.


It’s likely that your business will experience a performance slump in January. However, with the right planning and the right execution, you can minimize your productivity losses and start 2016 off the right way.

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