Spring is supposed to be a season of renewed optimism and energy, so why is your recruiting team dragging? It’s not Tax Day getting them down but more likely the end of the first quarter. During the March/April transition, many people feel burned out after they’ve started the year strong and put huge effort into meeting Q1 goals.
As April’s days get warmer and brighter, try some of these strategies to refresh your team and set them up for continued engagement and success:
- Give your recruiting team a little time off. Let them go at noon or even give the whole day off. This extra paid time off will show you appreciate their dedication, and provide downtime for them to recharge. If you can do it on a Friday, that three-day break will have even greater positive impact. If time off isn’t possible, try declaring an “unplugged weekend” for your team, at least from work.
- Encourage your recruiting team to take vacation time. Project: Time Off’s State of American Vacation 2016 report found that more than half of American workers (55%) left vacation days unused. When asked what prevented them from taking time off, 58% of employees reported a lack of support from their boss, and 53% reported the same from their colleagues. What’s even more interesting is that 80% of respondents said they would be likely to take more time off if they felt fully encouraged by their boss. The way to a happier, more productive recruiting team in Q2 may simply be to show your genuine support for employees’ time away.
- Send employees on a field trip. Sometimes a change of scenery helps employees renew and refresh. Offer a day of paid training and let your staff choose the type of skill or knowledge they’d like to build on an individual basis. Or, send them to explore a new campus for your next college recruiting campaign. The key is to adjust expectations for their workload while they are out of the office, so the trip doesn’t leave them feeling more, rather than less, stressed.
- Plan a volunteer day. For employees who have volunteer interests, enable them to take a paid day off to volunteer at a place of their choosing. Or, turn it into team-building day by volunteering as a group for Habitat for Humanity, a local food pantry or a community park/river clean up. The change of scenery and chance to do good are rejuvenating. According to UnitedHealth Group’s survey on health and volunteerism, 94% of respondents said volunteering improves their mood, and 78% said it lowers their stress levels.
Engage Your Team in a Longer-Term Fix
The large workloads and lack of time which leave your team feeling stressed are perennial issues in talent acquisition. Still, there may be adjustments your team can make to streamline workflows and reduce stress over the longer term. Plan time for a half- or all-day TA retreat at which you have open dialogue about their ideas for improving efficiency. Set expectations that you may not be able to act on every idea, but that you hope to be able to use some ideas to help everybody on the team work more efficiently. The value you place on your team’s input, and the feeling of control they get from making improvements in their daily work can also help everyone look on the bright side for Q2.