balancing worklife

Silly Season Stress

Making the most of the festive season in the workplace

The holiday countdown has begun! And for most, this is the time when stress at home and in the workplace starts to mount… Between shopping for presents, planning catch ups, busy work schedules and work parties, it is not uncommon to feel overwhelmed during the Christmas season. Workers can encounter increased symptoms of perfectionism and social anxiety throughout this time of year. This means managers must remain on high alert and be conscious of their employees.

The term ‘stress less’ is much more easier said than done for most, especially in the workplace. Sometimes the festive season can increase stress on workers, due to ongoing demands to finish in time for the break. This is a good time for managers to introduce the conversation around a positive work/life balance.

It’s a good idea to implement beneficial levels of support during this time, particularly on a more social level. This could be checking in regularly to see how employees are going and thanking them for all their hard work throughout the year. When showing your appreciation and giving thanks don’t just send a generic email to everyone, but actually reach out face-to-face. Employees will appreciate the gesture and reward you through their work.  The ‘just get it done’ culture is not appropriate in the weeks leading up to Christmas. Extra support should be administrated, whether it’s cutting workloads or extending deadlines to the New Year. An alternative, is hiring additional temporary staff to take on extra work if deadlines cannot be altered.

Here are some tips and tricks for Managers to implement during the silly season:

  1. Communicate regularly with employees: adopt a “door always open” approach, remaining approachable to all employees at all times.
  2. Monitor workloads: regularly review workloads to ensure individuals aren’t handling excessive amounts of work on their own. If so, assign others to assist or if possible hire temps to take on some of the load.
  3. Don’t see stress as a weakness: stress shouldn’t be regarded as a downfall of your employees. Encourage open discussions with your team regarding pressure sources and take action if required.
  4. Be aware of change: no matter how big or how small, change always has an impact on employees. When change occurs, stress can follow. Ensure you are transparent about change with your employees and walk them through step-by-step.
  5. Share your plans: if appropriate, be open with your business strategy and share plans for the upcoming year. Let your team look forward to the New Year with you.
  6. And finally, but most importantly, encourage festive cheer! Be open to decorating the office, putting a tree up and a Secret Santa. This way your employees will look forward to the upcoming festivities but also enjoy the Christmas cheer around the office.

 

About The Author – Shannon Lippert

As PKL Recruitment’s New South Wales Branch Manager, Shannon is responsible for both the Temporary and Permanent Divisions. Since joining the PKL Recruitment team in 2013, Shannon has always lead from the front, guiding and growing the Sydney PKL Recruitment Branch to be one of the most successful recruitment teams in Sydney. Contact Shannon directly on shannon.lippert@pkl.com.au or on LinkedIn.

What Did You Do Last Summer?

Sun, parties, holidays… That’s summer to most people, what if you have career goals to achieve?

Do you want to have fun this summer without jeopardising your career aspirations? Well you can! The ‘party season’ is the prime opportunity to get out and join professional networking groups whilst having fun. A good place to start is to look outside of your professional circle, focus on hobbies that interest you. You will meet people that share similar interests, these people could become long term, professional contacts and friends.

Support a cause close to your heart, Volunteer at charities that will help to make a difference to others in need. Or attend charity events, you will not only feel great that you’re making a difference, but meet amazing people in the process.

Do it digital, online meet up platforms such as meetup.com bring the network to you! There are so many different groups to choose from, whether its language groups, art, culture or business groups, you can find it here. You can even create your own!

You can mix business with pleasure, I find as long as you’re armed with a plan of what you want to achieve in the holidays, then you’re on track to having your most productive and fun summer yet!

 

About the Author – Matthew James

Matthew James started his recruitment career in early 2016 at PKL Recruitment. Since then, with the training and support of both internal and external coaches he has built the confidence and skills to provide a personal service to his clients and candidates. Matthew prides himself on building relationships and embarking on a journey with his candidates to ensure a stress free and seamless process. Contact Matthew directly on matthew.james@pkl.com.au or on LinkedIn.

Can Mums Really Have It All?

Have you been thinking about returning to work?

Is your maternity leave almost over or are the kids getting to the age where full time school is just around the corner?  You’ve decided it’s time to get back into the workforce once again or even for the first time in your career.

The decision to return to work doesn’t have to be stressful. There are workplaces ready to welcome you and discuss flexible working arrangements which can be very exciting!

From one mum to another, here are some pros to returning to work:

Flexibility: part-time and flexible working arrangements can offer the opportunity to balance your professional career and responsibilities at home.

Career continuity: whether you return to work in your previous role, or begin in a new organisation or professional path altogether, flexible working hours offer consistent career development, improving your future career growth opportunities.

Satisfaction: being around adults and having the opportunity to socialise with colleagues and be part of work events and projects will be exciting. Some mums may also feel motivated to be financially independent. Having a steady stream of income will provide a sense of achievement and the ability to plan for the future!

When having the conversation with your manager, remember that doing what’s best for you and your family is important and realising that with forward planning and an open dialogue of expectations with the team, you can have the best of both worlds. 

Are you ready to take the step into a flexible working routine?

About The Author – Lauren Stuckey

Lauren Stuckey, Senior Recruitment Consultant, has been with PKL Recruitment since 2009 and currently managing a temporary desk. Having had two maternity breaks between 2013-2015, she would be happy to discuss how PKL Recruitment have worked to build a flexible working relationship to support her successful work and home life.

Perfect The Balancing Act

How to get the most out of school holidays  

When it comes to planning for your children on school holidays, you can experience mixed emotions. You may be excited that you have the opportunity to spend more quality time with your children, or slightly anxious about organising activities while you are at work. 

School holidays can become challenging when you receive 4 weeks of annual leave per year, and there are 12 weeks of school holidays per year – between yourself and your partner, it is not enough.

Here are some of our best tips for our PKL Recruitment working parents on how to prepare for school holidays and perfect the balancing act: 

  • Plan ahead – consider your children’s interests and start planning holiday day camps or clubs. These are a great way to keep the kids entertained while you are at work 
  • Ask for help – grandparents, family members and even neighbours and friends are often delighted to help out and spend quality time with your children, even if it is 1 or 2 days per week 
  • Take a day off or seek flexible work arrangements – if you are unable to take the entire holiday period off, schedule annual leave days during school holidays, or work from home if possible, so you can relax with your children and ensure that they get to spend some time with you.

There are many more options out there to help working parents perfect their balancing act when it comes to school holidays. We would love to hear what our readers do during school holidays with their children! 

PKL Recruitment specialises in permanent and temporary recruitment for business administration and office support positions across a wide variety of industries. We can help you find a job flexible enough to suit your family and career aspirations.