Summer Slump

Trying to void the summer slump? IMG: via Shutterstock.

Now that it’s officially summer, you may have found yourself becoming easily distracted by thoughts of beach days, barbeques, and fun in the sun outside. Studies show that workplace productivity reduces by a significant margin during the summer months; according to a study conducted by the Captivate Network, professional productivity plummets as low as 20 percent in some cases! In addition to that general finding, the study also reveals that projects take up to 13 percent longer to complete, and that workers can become 45 percent more distracted than normal.

Says Forbes contributor Ryan Scott, “It’s not just your imagination: summer is getting in the way of getting things done at work.” With this in mind, it’s important to find ways to incorporate summertime fun into your daily routine at the office. Scott discovered “5 Ways to Summerize Workplace Philanthropy,” which may be able to boost productivity when you find yourself sinking into that summertime work slump. Here’s what he suggests:

  1. “Get outside.” Because the employees at your nonprofit organization or office will be daydreaming about the outdoors already, why not try and let them “work” or volunteer outside? There are often plenty of volunteer opportunities, fundraisers, and chances to have brief meetings outside – help your coworkers or employees get their outdoor fix to boost productivity.
  1. “Blue sky it.” Scott suggests taking a moment to step back and look at your community impact through a different lens. He recommends hosting a hackathon, or organizing a day where employees can break up into teams to reevaluate the company’s values and strategy. Basically, looking at your organization as a whole in a big-picture kind of way, and incorporating fun, unique ways of discussing company values with employees.
  1. “Voluntourism for vacationers.” “Let your employees know that if they want to make their vacations more meaningful and mix in some good works along the way, you’ll do your best to source opportunities that make sense for them and your company,” suggests Scott. Encourage vacations and especially promote volunteerism during them so that your employees can enjoy an enriching experience as well as a restful one.
  1. “Let the games begin.” Rallying around one good cause during the summertime might be just what your organization needs to remain focused and productive. Get creative and insert a competitive edge or a little incentive into the cause your organization is focusing on. For example, Scott suggests raising funds for a local children’s organization, and then celebrating the success of the fundraiser by taking the kids to a local amusement park to enjoy the day together.
  1. “Love your Mother.” The “Mother” that Scott is talking about here is Mother Earth. Summertime is a great opportunity to devote yourself or your company’s focus to nature or green-based causes. Creating sustainable activities in the office or encouraging your team to commute to work by bike instead of car will end up helping them get their outdoor fix and boost work productivity. Creating incentives for going green at work will make for a fun, lighthearted addition to the daily routine, and will help your employees feel like they aren’t missing out on all of summer’s offerings.

How are you planning on boosting employee engagement this summer?