3 Things to Do for Your Business this Holiday Season
As we break to connect with family and friends and prepare for the new year, together with our IBA Group colleagues, we would like to share three tips for the holiday season. Coming from a technology solutions partner, these “must dos” may come as a bit of a surprise.
We are not offering a list of how to get more from your mainframe. Or all the ways automation will improve your performance in 2022 (spoiler alert, look for that next week!). Nor are we reminding you how to get your teams cloud-ready, or how to integrate contactless payments into your post-pandemic strategies. Today, we are giving some good old-fashioned holiday advice that is smart for your business. And for your state of mind.
Take a Break
We mean that. Seriously. Take a break from the daily demands of work, with its constant deadlines and instant communication. Step away from your devices. Power down. And use this time to reconnect. Start by reconnecting with yourself.
Get active! Do something invigorating like going on a hike. Consider exploring a new part of your city by foot. Use quiet time outdoors, or at home in your favorite chair, to clear your head. Even if it is only for a day, rid yourself of the noise that constantly battles for your attention.
Trust us, your To Do List will keep. And, you may be surprised to know, taking time to rest improves mental clarity. Ultimately, rest even enhances productivity. In fact, at the start of this year, Forbes called rest a “fundamental part of success.” How many of us have tried to put that lesson into practice over the course of a busy, and sometimes chaotic 2021?
It’s not too late. Take your break now. Then, come back ready to do even more in 2022.
Reclaim your Home
Many of us around the world have been living the work from home life for more than a year. And while it does offer advantages, the ability to work from home can make it difficult to separate your home life from your work life. Of course, that makes it even more difficult to take a break and reset for the new year.
Use holiday time away from work to cultivate a more relaxing environment, even if you have only one corner of a room that you can free up for yourself. Designate an area in your home that you will not use for work during your break. And, if you can, try to maintain this separate sliver of space when you get back to work in full force in 2022.
A TINYpulse employee engagement survey that polled remote workers in May 2021 revealed 86% of individuals who work remotely report experiencing a great deal of burnout. So, if you are experiencing burnout, you are not alone. Fortunately, there are things you can do to help, starting with reclaiming your space. Creating spaces, even small ones, in which we can work, and then other spaces in which we can unwind, helps to prevent burnout.
Designate a separate zone that is just for you, not for Zoom, or anything related to work demands. Then enjoy some quiet time in your separate space (again, even if it is just your favorite chair!).
Make Plans Intentionally - and Have Fun
Networking for the sake of networking is not really socializing. Nor is it likely to revive you if you are feeling burned out or just run down. We know it is difficult to get together right now. But, if you can get out in the world and connect with colleagues safely, do it!
We are not talking about scheduling sales meetings and pitches. We are talking about making intentional plans to meet up with a coworker or a business partner to do something fun. You do not even have to talk about work. In fact, do not talk about work. Get together intentionally and connect person-to-person. Learn more about each other. Use the opportunity to share something meaningful to you. That could include getting together to watch a game, see a show, try a new restaurant, or go for a walk. Simple human interactions have been lacking from our calendars in 2021. So, before the year is over, make the effort (health and safety permitting) to spend quality time with someone you have been working with remotely. Or to reconnect with an old friend.
Harvard Business Review cited research that demonstrates “professional and personal networks have shrunk by close to 16%” from the start of the pandemic to the beginning of 2021. And that was a year ago! If, as HBR puts it, our networks are shrinking, now is the time to commit to building them back up again. More than helping to position young employees on their career trajectories, networks help executives, business owners, and other professionals feel less alone and more supported. In addition to opening opportunities for partnerships, real networking – connecting with others on an individual level – helps us to make more creative decisions, explore new ideas, and find pathways to success in the coming year and beyond.
So, we encourage you to reach out and connect with someone in your network. Even if it is just a phone call, take time to listen to their story and to share some of yours. And take time to take a break, together. 2022 will be much brighter for you – and for your business – as a result.