How To Help Your Employees Keep Their New Year’s Resolutions

  • — January 5, 2017

    How to help your employees keep your new year's resolutions

    According to a 2016 report from Statistic Brain, only 8% of Americans are successful in keeping their New Year’s Resolutions.

    The most common explanation for this (which we can all relate to) is simply that life gets in the way.

    We have so much to do on a regular basis that adding something to the mix is nice in theory, but difficult in practice.

    It’s disappointing to fail at something we intend to achieve, so here are some simple tips for managers to help their employees keep their resolutions and kick off the new year with a bang 💥

    Take The Time To Ask

    Show your employees that you care by asking them if they have a New Year’s resolution and let them know that you’d like to help them keep it.

    They will be grateful for this kind gesture of letting them know that their personal success is as important as their work success, and that work-life balance is a company priority.

    When employees feel seen, respected and appreciated, they are more likely to want to reciprocate by putting their best effort into their work.

    Make It An Interactive Group Activity

    Make the experience of setting goals a fun and collective one.

    Schedule a meeting with your team to have a casual discussion about how everyone would like to improve in the new year, on a professional and personal level (if they want to share).

    The Officevibe marketing team had one of these meetings before the holidays. It lasted for three hours and it was an amazing way to collaborate and share ideas on how we can improve individually and as a team.

    While there was some structure to the meeting, it was more of a discussion than anything. We all had a chance to speak, react, and offer advice in a friendly and safe space.

    Here’s How Officevibe Discusses Goals

    You can use this same method to set personal and professional goals for the New Year.

    Each member of the team is given a stack of different colour post-its on which they write their notes and ideas. Then, on a white board, we create three columns:

    1. Keep Doing-What we are proud of and what’s working well.
    2. Stop Doing-What can use improvement.
    3. Start Doing-New initiatives to bring to the team.

    We all take turns filling up each column with our respective post-it notes and saying a word or two on what we wrote down. Afterward, the team discusses the points and shares insights.

    Stating your goal out loud in a group setting helps you become more accountable for it, and it allows everyone to see who might have a similar goal and who they can connect with in their workplace for support and motivation.

    According to Statistic Brain:

    People who explicitly make resolutions are 10 times more likely to attain their goals than people who don’t explicitly make resolutions

    Help Them Set Attainable Goals

    One of the biggest problems with New Year’s resolutions, or any goals for that matter, is that they are too broad.

    Resolutions like “eat healthier” is so common, but the problem is that it’s not really measurable and therefore isn’t really attainable.

    Much like with professional goals, encourage your employees to set realistic objectives using OKRs.

    For example, a goal such as “take the stairs at least 3 days a week for the next two weeks” is more specific and measurable than simply “get more exercise”.

    Using the OKR system turns the mere intention of setting a resolution into a more tangible contract.

    This Huffington Post article on the science of goal setting explains that:

    You become 42% more likely to achieve your goals and dreams, simply by writing them down on a regular basis

    The key is to be specific, realistic and also current. Setting goals for the whole of 2017 is too ambitious, and while it’s important to aim high, aiming too high will work in your disservice.

    Inspire The Workplace

    As a manager, it’s not your duty to ensure that they succeed at each of their resolutions. However, it is your responsibility to motivate your employees, and create an environment that is both stimulating and encouraging.

    The truth is that the person who shows up to work every day is the same person who goes home at night, so while ‘professional’ and ‘personal’ are two separate spheres, the same person inhabits both. This is why it is important to help your employees feel fulfilled on both levels.

    Starting off the day with an inspirational ritual will help set the tone for how your team functions during the remainder of the day.

    I didn’t realize how important this was until I switched jobs.

    A Glimpse Into An Officevibe Morning Ritual

    At a previous job of mine, everyone came in quietly, sat at their desk and started working immediately. It was the culture of the place, and I was used it to at the time.

    Then came Officevibe.

    There’s a morning energy here that is so inspiring, it makes coming to work an absolute pleasure.

    On Monday’s we have our “Good Vibes Meeting,” where we all stand in a circle, talk about our weekends and then huddle together for a motivational quote from our CEO. The process is so stimulating that it’s almost replaced caffeine for me

    Implementing similar rituals into your team would be a great way to do your part in raising the positive energy and increasing drive in the workplace.

    Drive to work harder on self-goals as well as professional ones.

    Set The Example

    This Harvard Business Review article says it best:

    A leader must stand by and exemplify the values he preaches.

    This is why it’s important to be transparent with your team about your own resolutions, but more generally, to set a good example by being someone that they admire and would want to emulate.

    Simple ways to set a good example for your employees

    1. Have a positive attitude
    2. Be organized
    3. Work hard and efficiently
    4. Speak with respect to the people around you

    These are all really basic things, but the role of a leader comes with the responsibility of being the best version of yourself so that the people who look up to you can strive to become the best version of themselves.

    The “do what I say, not what I do” adage just won’t cut it.

    If you want high-functioning, efficient, and responsible employees, the best way to ensure that happens is to act that way yourself.

    Offer A Healthy Environment

    The majority of resolution lists include either “eat healthily” or “lose weight” (if not both).

    Statistic Brain writes that, 38% of all resolutions are weight related, whereas 47% revolve around general self-improvement.

    These are really important resolutions because a healthy lifestyle affects almost all other areas of our life, like sleep habits, capacity for concentration, energy levels and happiness.

    Offering your employees a healthy work environment will be mutually beneficial because the better your employees feel, the better they will perform at work.

    How to promote healthier living in the workplace

    1. Offer healthier kitchen snacks like fruit, vegetables, yogurt, and granola.
    2. Encourage your company to help employees pay for a gym membership.
    3. Organize fun activities like outdoor walking groups during lunch hour or early morning exercise sessions like Insanity (I just did my first one with some colleagues from Officevibe. Woah. What a way to start the day).
    4. Create team challenges like taking the stairs everyday and offer rewards to the winning team.
    5. Offer your employees mindfulness programs.

    Providing your employees with the tools and resources they need to succeed as individuals will make the new year better for everyone.

    The respect you show them will be returned by way of gratitude and hard work, but the truth is that…

    A good leader fosters employee growth, regardless of bottom line return.

    How else do you think you can help your employees keep their resolutions?

    We’d love to hear your ideas!

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