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5 Creative Ways to Beat the Vacation Blues (in the Office)


Oh summertime… the time for splashing in the sea in Mykonos, tasting the finest cheese and wine in Tuscany, or galavanting through the newest water parks in your dream city.  It’s a time to clock out of the office, gather your swimsuits and your loved ones, and spice up your mundane life a bit.  It’s all fun and games, but then- wham!  Welcome to September.  Time to go back to the office.


For the managers and HR professionals of the crowd, you know what a double edged sword this time can be.  It’s important for your employees to take a holiday to recharge and rest their engines, but the post-vacation blues can create a total drop in motivation.  Re-engaging your employees is critical, as companies with engaged employees outperform those without by a whopping 202%.   While views of a cubicle can’t compete with turquoise island waters, there are a few things that can be done to excite and re-engage your people.

Here are the top 5 ways we’ve seen the best companies act to re-engage their people after a long summer holiday:

  1. Remember what you’re here for.  Ease the vacation hangover by re-engaging employee’s excitement about your company’s mission.  When people can see the outcome of their work, it builds passion.  And this passion, builds intrinsic motivation.  Share success stories of your customers, speak about a new project’s potential, or distribute a new case study to your team.  Even if you don’t have an official case study, bringing up successes stories in your next team meeting can begin to paint a colorful and impactful picture.  
  2.  Invite an inspiring speaker to share his or her story with the company.  Many organizations invest in enriching activities for their employees on a quarterly basis, and one of the the most straightforward ways to captivate a large audience from C-level to entry level, is by inviting an inspiring speaker to address the crowd.  From overcoming challenges in the wilderness, to winning the Olympics against all odds- these speakers can ignite a small flame of inspiration within us all.
  3.  Connect with colleagues.  Returning to the office from time away can be slightly depressing.  But human connection, friendship, and empathy goes a long way in diffusing negative feelings.  Encourage your employees to connect with colleagues in person, with 1:1 meetings, or via video if the team is dispersed.  Emailing with your team doesn’t compare to a sense of human connection that one can get from a live conversation or video chat.
  4. Take a mini staycation with the team.  Q. What’s the best way of beating the vacation blues?  A. Planning your next vacation.  While your company probably isn’t going to fund a trip to the Bahamas in the next few months, you can bring a taste of wonder and intrigue to the place you live.  Chances are, some people even vacation where you live!  So why not take the magic to the streets with your team?  Pitaya works with some amazing tour guides, and I’ve personally been wowed by street art in my own backyard.  Many city walking tours are about 1.5- 2 hours, and can be a great way to treat your people to a fun new view of their own city.
  5. Host an interesting meetup.  Hosting a meetup is a great way to involve multiple teams across your company, as well as spread some good PR for the cause you believe in.  Come up with an industry leading idea, or search through for some inspiration if you’re stuck for inspiration.  A nice example of a company doing this type of open meetup is Viber, who invited Product Managers of all companies to discuss PM related topics at a previous meetup they held.

How do you re-engage employees after they’ve spent some time away?

We’d love to hear your thoughts!  


For more inspiration about team building and employee enrichment, check out


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