It’s supposed to be the most wonderful time of the year. However, when consumers get annoyed by the long lines, crowds of people, and stressful holiday travel, your employees are the ones who take the brunt of it.
One of the hardest times of the year to work in customer service is the holidays. Still, you need your team to continue offering high level service regardless of the stress they’re under. For many of your customers, the holiday season is their first opportunity to set foot in your store. Giving negative service could hurt your potential for future sales and lead to damaging online reviews.
The key is to keep your team performing well, even when they’re under pressure. Here are a few ways you can help your employees work better during this stressful time of year.
Look for the Warning Signs
One of your first queues of work stress will come directly from your employees. Actively look for these warning signs so you can give your employee a break and figure out how to resolve the stressful situation immediately.
A few of the common warning signs of serious job stress include apathy, negativity, anxiety, anger, and physical ailments, such as headaches or stomach problems.
If you notice an employee experiencing any of these, take her off the floor immediately. Talk to her and let her air her grievances. Sometimes, all someone needs is to vent for a few minutes to feel better. Other times, she might be better off performing other tasks for the remainder of her shift.
Set the Schedule Early
It’s a busy time of year in everyone’s life. People need to know what to expect in terms of their work schedules so they can plan for family time, shopping of their own, and entertaining out of town guests.
Set the schedule as early as possible. Encourage employees to wrinkle out any time off requests needed so everyone is on the same page. This will save any additional stress in not knowing when they’re expected to work or how much they’ll make during the holiday season.
Keep the Mood Light
When you notice your team getting frazzled, step in and lighten things up a bit.
Lend a helping hand with a cheerful demeanor. Make your workplace enjoyable again by taking the lead and setting the example. The more your employees see you shirking off the stress, the more they’ll follow suit.
Do the Holidays Leave Your Team Stressed?
Stress is part of life during this time of year. If you notice your team feeling overwhelmed and less upbeat than usual, get them back on track by stepping in early to relieve potential stressors and leading by example.
Author Profile Jon Forknell is the Vice President and General Manager of Atlas Business Solutions, Inc., a software marketing company specializing in employee scheduling software, including ScheduleBase employee scheduling software, and other business software solutions. In the past, Jon has been recognized by the U.S. Small Business Administration as a SBA Young Entrepreneur of the Year. Atlas Business Solutions was named as one of Software Magazine’s Top 500 Software Companies in 2004 through 2007 and again in 2010, 2013 and 2014.