This year has without a doubt been a tough one for people and businesses alike. It’s been a very emotional and mentally draining year and without an obvious light at the end of the tunnel, our end of year fatigue is settling in a little bit earlier than we all anticipated.
Not being able to go on holidays, or take time off, or for some losing their jobs completely, it’s no surprise we are feeling like we’re crawling to the end of the year, hoping for some relief when 2022 kicks in.
This fatigue we are feeling has been a constant presence since March 2020. “Fatigue is a feeling of constant tiredness or weakness and can be physical, mental or a combination of both”. If you’re feeling fatigued, be sure to know that it is a symptom, not a condition. It is complex and can be caused by a combination of multiple factors including lifestyle choices, social, psychological and general wellbeing issues.
At Corporate Edge, we are passionate about all teams and their health and wellbeing, especially as part of a larger organisation. We, like a lot of Australian businesses, have suffered through these unexpected challenges but we are determined to come out the other side more resilient and with a larger scope of client offerings.
End of year fatigue can be combatted a few different ways. From individual self-care to organisations helping their employees with mental health care and other support programs. We all experience difficult times differently, so it’s important to be aware of how best to support the individual.
For this post, we asked our Head of Operations, Eliza, to talk us through how she is coping with end of year fatigue and how she intends on getting herself and her team through it and coming out feeling refreshed before 2021 ends.
From the desk of our Head of Operations, Eliza
It’s been a challenging year and we have gained so many learnings as well as pivoted in our operating rhythm.
One of the key changes was continuing our morning catchups with the team (which we initiated when COVID-19 hit) to check in on how they were feeling by asking them to share where they rate on a scale of 1 to 10. As the year has progressed and the team began returning to the office, it was increasingly more important to have these check-ins because it provided an insight into the team’s mental wellbeing. Where team members shared 1-2 consecutive lower ratings, we would deep dive and work out ways to support the team member in any way possible to help them return to a more positive state of well-being.
Alongside our daily check-ins, we have also implemented a daily gratitude, focus for the day/week or a share. These help to remind the team of the bigger things they are grateful for, instead of becoming bogged down in negative feelings. It lifts the mood and gain an insight into each other’s lives and feelings. A focus can be work related or personal, as with a share. Having these open and honest conversations lifts spirits and puts the team in a positive and healthy mindset to start their day.
One other initiative was to encourage the team to take a week leave one or two months prior to Christmas, so that their health and wellbeing is optimal for enjoying their well-deserved Christmas break (and minimise the chance of them getting sick during their break). It also helped the remainder of the team to work together, keeping our process and client experience smooth.
Mix it up at lunch
Here at Corporate Edge, we always encourage healthy eating and exercise. We encourage team members to walk and pickup lunch orders, where we then all sit and enjoy our lunch breaks together. This gives us an opportunity to share our personal self with each other (work talk is not permitted!) Weather permitting lunches are spent outside in the fresh air. With this being one of our cultural rituals, we know that the team have had a healthy break in their day. It also encourages more personal connections within the team.
As an organisation, you are somewhat responsible for the health and wellbeing of your team. However, as a leader, there are several things you can be doing for yourself (and should be doing), that will help you show up, be more present and fight fatigue as we endure this seemingly long haul to the finish line, together.
How are you combatting fatigue for your team?