While some businesses have returned to the office, others continue to work remotely for the foreseeable future. This will be the second Christmas that many employees have spent working remotely. They are likely to miss out on Christmas social activities, like decorating the office and planning a company social event.
There are numerous benefits to working from home, and many employees prefer it to office work. However, people are more likely to feel lonely in the festive season, especially if they live alone. Remote organisations need to support their employees through the Christmas period.
Here are a few ways you can celebrate the festive season with your remote employees.
Send Them a Gift
You could send your team a gift in the week leading up to Christmas. Write a card to each employee thanking them for their hard work throughout the year. You could include a chocolate Christmas gift set along with a bottle of wine and festive wrapping paper. A small gift can help your team to feel valued and appreciated at work, the most important thing is that they feel like you’ve thought of them.
Have Online Group Activities
You need to incorporate a social element into your remote work. You could hold a zoom quiz on a Thursday night to encourage everyone to hang out remotely. Or, you could do something a little more whacky and host a Christmas carol session on Teams. These activities can be as silly and fun as you want. You just need to get your team in the Christmas spirit and laughing again.
Organize a Secret Santa
Suggest doing Secret Santa with the team this year, but do not force them to do so. Set a small budget of around $5 and ask people to pick names at random. Keep the gift small and fun so more people can participate. But remember that some people may be on a tight budget and can’t afford to buy another gift, so make sure you highlight it’s an optional activity and never a requirement.
You, as their leader, could also give each employee a gift from the company, whether it be branded face masks for protection or something they could use on a daily basis while working. Small gestures like this are what matters, and making your employees feel like they are valued will show not only in the work they do but the results they produce! So be sure to consider a small company gift, it doesn’t have to be expensive, but it’s definitely the thought that counts!
When everyone has bought the gifts for their assigned person, have a group call so that everyone can open their gift together. When setting the date for said call, have in mind that most of these will have to be sent by post. Make sure you give everyone enough time to buy their assigned gifts and send them over to their colleague and for said colleague to receive them. The last thing you want is for someone to be in that call seeing everyone else opening their gifts, while they have not to receive theirs yet.
Allow Parents an Extra Day Off
If any of your employees are parents, offer them an extra day off to spend with their children. Not many companies offer this benefit, and employees will surely feel very appreciative to be able to spend some extra time with the little ones. This is also a good opportunity for them to make the festive season a bit more magical for their children.
Christmas Bonus Incentive
Over the year, you could file any extra profits and tips into an account for the employee Christmas bonus. Each employee will receive a portion of his amount as their Christmas bonus. Christmas and New Year are usually tight on money after buying gifts for their loved ones, and therefore Christmas bonus will be much appreciated (and especially handy for those with children).
Plus, as another added bonus for you, this can really help with employee engagement when working remotely. If people know they have a bonus at the end of the year, it gives them that added motivation to really focus and do their jobs. They’re more likely to become loyal and attached to the company as well because you’re supporting them when they need it the most.
Make Christmas magical at your company this year with a few gifts and festive events.