September is a busy time of year for most people. It is the beginning of a new school year. It is the end of summer and time for people to get back into work mode. More importantly, it is the transitional month that ends the 3rd quarter and starts the 4th quarter. Once the fourth quarter comes around, not only are businesses trying to get that last push to surpass their successes of the prior year; they should be analyzing the past year and begin making preparations and an action plan for the year to come.

What Type of Analysis Should I Be Doing in the 4th Quarter?

Of course, every business enters the fourth quarter with the mindset of doing a financial analysis. Business owners need to see what was lucrative and what cost the company more money than it made. However, from our standpoint, it is just as important to conduct a human resource analysis of the past year and create an action plan for the year ahead regarding employee retention, team building, and training. It is widely believed that if your employees are happy, they will work harder and smarter, helping increase your overall business revenue. Moreover, happy employees are the best advertisement many businesses can have.

How Can I Improve Employee Morale in the Upcoming Year?

As you are analyzing your employees and HR-related issues, it is essential to look at what employees are asking about and what your competition is doing to keep their employees happy. Some of the issues that keep employees happy and are easy to change include:

  • Voluntary benefits, such as accidental health insurance plans, life insurance, and medical supplements. These plans cost little to nothing for the employer to implement and cost little out of the employee’s pay. However, they show an extra layer of commitment on the part of the employer when it comes to employee health and wellness.
  • Wellness programs such as walking clubs, healthy eating initiatives, and even in-office accommodations, such as monthly massage chair events. By wanting your employees to be healthy and willing to give a bit of company time to make it happen, you show your employees they are more than a number and producer.
  • Telecommuting opportunities. Sometimes employees like to know that they can work from home in the event of an emergency. While it may not be possible to allow this type of work environment all of the time, offering it on an as-needed basis can go a long way to show employees that their lives outside of the office are as important as their lives inside the office.

These are just a few ideas that are worth reviewing in the fourth quarter. If they make sense for your work environment, it is a good idea to begin the process of implementing them such that they are ready to launch at the beginning of the new year.

What Types of Employee Training and Team Building Are Right for Our Team?

In addition to benefits that can help keep employees happy in the new year, you should also consider the types of training and team building events that can help your team succeed in the workplace and beyond. Training and team building exercises are a wonderful way to learn more about what makes your business and employees strive and what are struggles that need to be addressed throughout the entire workplace. It also gives the employees and management an opportunity to work together as peers as opposed to the standard supervisor/subordinate roles. Here are some great examples of training and team building that may be worth exploring in the 4th quarter and implementing in the new year:

  • Management training. This type of training is a great way to help your manager and supervisors improve their management style. There are always new techniques available to help managers and supervisors motivate their team. A management training should focus on positive reinforcement techniques and how your management team can effectively lead a team by example.
  • Project-focused team building. This type of team building activity can place employees and their supervisors together on a team wherein no one has a supervisory role. The goal would be that each team must complete a project together and present the project to the group as a team. The team should devise how they work together and accomplish the goal within the provided time period, which may be a day or a few days.
  • Exciting outings for team building. Many companies will take advantage of company-wide outings and events to aid in team building. With the increased interest and availability of events like escape rooms and Top Golf outings, companies can use a fun event to help the team get to know each other and complete a task while in a different environment and working on different objectives than within in the standard office and work day.

These are few options available for companies to consider for team building and training. The idea is to build employee confidence and foster a positive relationship between management and the employees.

If you are looking for innovative ways to help keep your employees happy and excited about another year in business, contact the HR experts at Fusion Employer Services. We are happy to walk you through your end of year analysis and devise the best action plan for the upcoming year.