How to Put the Thanks in Thanksgiving

Posted on November 24, 2011.

There’s no argument that this is an extremely busy time of year. Between travelling, relatives invading, cooking and shopping, it’s a wonder anyone has time to actually “work”.  And if you’re trying to clear your desk to take a few extra days, you are at max stress level.  But this is exactly the time you need to look around and take the time to sincerely thank the people who have worked hard all year. You’re not the only one stressing out. Here’s a few tips to make the holidays more enjoyable everyone:

• Be grateful. Thanksgiving is as great time to send out a message  (either in person or electronically) thanking everyone on the team for all his or her hard work.  It’s even better if you can site specific outcomes that their hard work generated. This note doesn’t need to be long and drawn out to be impactful. There's nothing like going home for Thanksgiving feeling appreciated.

• Put off cleaning off your desk. Let’s face it, if you put it off this long, it can wait another few days. It might give you peace of mind while you’re watching the big game, but whatever left your desk, went onto someone else’s.  Now they can spend the Holiday worrying about a new deadline. If you just can’t leave it, make sure the recipient knows that you have no expectation that anything be completed over Thanksgiving weekend.

• Turn off your smart phone. Sending or forwarding emails during a major Holiday is unnecessary. Is the information embedded in the message so critical that it can’t wait a day or two? Most managers are not saving lives every day.  No one will die if you just simply turn off the phone for a day.  Every message you forward to an employee disrupts their vacation. This is one time where misery does not love company.

Not everyone has the ability to really “take off” both mentally and physically. But if you do, try to remember the impact any and all of your actions have on everyone around you. As a manager, you have the responsibility to set the right example.

We wish everyone a stress-free, Happy Thanksgiving. We hope you have the opportunity to spend some quality time with friends and family and unplug for at least one day.