No amount of outright denial, hitting the “snooze button” outrageously, or aggressive calendar management will ward away the Monday blues. No matter how fun the weekend was, it has to end sometime right. You sleep happily enveloped in your bliss on Sunday nights, but as soon as the alarm goes off on Monday mornings, that’s when the reality creeps back in. for me, Mondays mark the end of unhurried enjoyment and the beginning of being governed by monotonous scheduling. However, what I have discovered is that for something so inevitable, instead of putting it at the back of your mind and avoiding it for as long as you can, it would do you better to start the week off as well as possible.
Most of us find the start of the week so depressing that try as we might, we can’t crack a smile until at least 11.16am. This struggle is so real, that more than half the employees are late on Mondays. And still down in the dumps, they struggle for another few hours to shake off the Monday blues, managing only about three-four hours of any productive work done. The question is that what can you as a manager do to perk them up and make Mondays less of a drag for your team?
While there is no one-way-fits-all when we talk about putting some positivity around Mondays, there are a lot of areas where you can make an impact and lift up the spirits of your team. Here’s how you can get your team feeling much happier when they wake up on Mondays:
Slash The Workweek To Ward Off The Monday blues
We are all accustomed to the five-day, 40-hour workweek, and the ritual of clocking in at 9 a.m. and only leaving after the clock has struck 5 p.m. in the evening, Sharp, is deeply ingrained in the lives of all Americans. If this is the only perfect way to work, why are so many companies switching to four-day workweeks, 15% to be precise.
Unsurprisingly, this welcoming shift into a four-day week really boosted the employee morale, which in turn lead to a boost in productivity. A happier, more content, and productive workforce is more inclined to put in their best efforts and adopt a new work policy. Imagine how happily you would return to work after a long weekend, every week. Since the normal weekend seems to end in a jiffy, Mondays almost always carry an aura of drudgery.
Expanding the weekend to three days naturally improves attitudes around work. Feeling refueled after a three-day weekend, employees feel more motivated to work, and experience less burn out while anticipating a four-day work week. If you want your employees not to fall prey to Monday blues, try eliminating Fridays.
Maintain A Friendly Office Ambiance
Perhaps the easiest, no-frills method to get your employees excited about Mondays is to make your workplace a fun haven where they actually want to be. While you can try to foster camaraderie in your office via video game consoles, ping-pong tables, and fancy furniture, nothing beats a warm and friendly group of friends. For this, company lunches and half-day retreats also work wonders. It is a fact that creating opportunities to allow social time between employees helps to cultivate friendships at workplace. Don’t try to get people along on gunpoint; mandated friendships never work. Relationships that develop naturally are the ones that stay. The office is going to be a social place, whether you like it or not; you might as well make it a positive one.
Host A Team Breakfast
Food brings people together like nothing else, so kick off your Mondays with a scrumptious team breakfast, and watch their faces light up. According to experts, our extreme loathing for Monday mornings stem from a deep-rooted tribal instinct. According to clinical psychologist, Alex Gardner, what happens is that after having come back from a long weekend, employees want to feel part of their tribe again, spend some time in the communal area, spend some time together, and catch up. Well, when you give them this opportunity to meet up, exchange a few good laughs, and eat great food, you help them cope with Monday blues. It offers them the fuel to be productive, instead of whining around, as they slowly adjust back into their routine.
It doesn’t have to be a strictly social affair every week. It is a great time to share anything they need to know or update them about the latest developments in the company, any policy changes. A good meal combined with engaging conversation will always help dull the edge of returning to the office, no matter how hectic their day is planned out to be.
Nothing can beat the freshness of being outdoors, granted you have great environment and weather. If you don’t want your employees to dwell on the prospect of returning to work on Mondays, why not give them a planned outdoor team building activity to focus on. It could be something like a sunrise yoga or nature walks. You will surely be surprised at the results. While you will have a diverse mix of colleagues, some who aren’t fitness or hate nature, but that won’t stop people from looking forward to the time spend away from work. In addition to heling you ease back into your routine after a fun weekend, exercise also serves as a natural mood booster, that can combat any negative feelings about back-to-work day. Even if you discount the productivity-boosting aspects of physical activity, it never hurts to stretch a muscle and get some fresh air.
Mondays may spell doom and gloom for all, but they don’t have be. While the case of Sunday scaries is all real, make sure it doesn’t plague your team at least. What you can do as a manager is to determine what would incite your workers to enjoy coming in on Mondays. Even though it would seem like a big hassle for now, I promise it will pay off.