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How Teams Can Engage Employees During The Summer

Updated: Jun 18

Summer can be a truly magical season. If you're like me, you think of sunshine, beach vacations, fireflies, and backyard barbecues!

But while many of us look forward to the warmer months, businesses face a unique challenge during this time: how to keep employees engaged and motivated during this special time of year?

The struggle is real, but don’t fret! We've gathered some advice from HR Pros to help you keep your team motivated and productive during those tempting summer months. It's like a summer survival guide for the workplace, with a side of SPF 50!

We've got tips on things like embracing flexible work arrangements and organizing outdoor team activities that'll help your team stay focused while still getting a taste of that sweet, sweet summer air. Because, let's be honest, a happy team is a hardworking team, and that's just good business sense.

So, grab a popsicle, and let's dive into these seven delightful strategies to keep your team engaged and productive all summer long!

  • Implement a Work from Anywhere Policy

  • Volunteering for Team Engagement

  • Leverage Summer Experiences with Photos

  • Engage Teams with VR Tasks

  • Organize Outdoor Team Activities

  • Encourage Flexible Work Arrangements

Implement a Work-from-Anywhere Policy

Working exclusively from home is as restrictive as working exclusively from an office. In the summer months, people are desperate for variety, new experiences, and, frankly, some sunshine.

Unlike working from home, a "work from anywhere" policy encourages employees to mix up their working environment. During the summer months, employees could spend time with relatives, clock some hours outside, or even try their hand at digital nomadism.

This will be especially beneficial to employees who are forgoing vacations, giving them some essential respite without interrupting their workflow. This is particularly important in the summer months when envy among employees is likely to cause resentment towards those on fabulous vacations.

Consequently, you can expect higher levels of employee engagement, motivation, and attendance than you would normally see during the summer months.

Chloe Yarwood, HR Business Partner, Test Partnership

Volunteer for Team Engagement

I've discovered as a leader that engaging the team can be challenging. However, I've found a strategy that has been effective for us: to provide volunteer options consistent with our business goals—for example, setting up a summer reading program.

These opportunities have brought numerous benefits to our team.

Firstly, volunteering together has promoted team bonding. They have formed connections based on shared values and interests by working towards a common goal outside of their usual roles.

It has also given our team a sense of purpose and fulfillment. They feel empowered by contributing to causes they care about and positively impacting the community.

Moreover, volunteering generates positive publicity for our company. It demonstrates our commitment to giving back to the community and improves our brand reputation.

In a nutshell, volunteering opportunities are an excellent way to keep your team engaged and motivated during the summer months.

Peter Bryla, Community Manager, ResumeLab

Leverage Summer Experiences with Photos

Summer is a time rife with vacations and abundant activities. Rather than compete against these happenings for employee attendance and attention, I leverage these experiences through low-lift, easy-engagement photo activities. 

For example, creating a shared photo album where teammates can upload their vacation photos. Or, a Slack channel prompt urging team members to drop a picture of an epic ice cream treat. These activities take very little time, help team members uncover common ground, and give coworkers a glimpse into each others' outside-of-work lives. Plus, these snapshots can be a burst of motivation for employees who are looking forward to their own upcoming vacations!

Grace He, People and Culture Director, TeamBuilding

Engage Teams with VR Tasks

HR leaders have the challenge of seasonally engaging their teams during the summer months. One tip is to focus on team-building activities that are unique and fun; an uncommon example would be to perform VR tasks together. 

This type of task requires devices, headsets, and applications which allow employees to use virtual reality technology such as immersive simulations, cooperative gaming, and more. These technologies break up a seemingly mundane workplace routine and help team members bond without having to leave the office or spend excessive amounts of money. 

Furthermore, by working together through such activities, team members can learn more about each other’s likes and dislikes, while also strengthening their camaraderie.

Organize Outdoor Team Activities

One effective strategy to engage teams during the summer months is to organize team-building activities that take advantage of the warm weather and longer daylight hours. For example, you could plan an outdoor company picnic or barbecue, organize a team hike or bike ride, or arrange for a group outing to a nearby beach or park. These types of activities can help to boost team morale and promote a sense of camaraderie and connection among team members.

In addition to these larger activities, you could also consider smaller initiatives such as offering flexible scheduling or remote work options to help employees enjoy more time outdoors and balance work and personal commitments.

Overall, the key is to make the most of summer and create opportunities for employees to connect with each other and recharge their batteries. By doing so, you can help to keep your team engaged and motivated, even during the typically slower summer months.

Encourage Flexible Work Arrangements

The summer months can prove challenging when engaging your team. However, one tip or strategy that has proven to be effective is encouraging flexible work arrangements. This may include allowing employees to telecommute or work flexible hours to accommodate summer schedules. 

By providing this perk, you are showing trust in your team's ability to manage their workload while balancing their personal and family commitments during the summer months. This can lead to increased job satisfaction, productivity, and overall team morale.

Jefferson McCall, Co-founder and HR Head, TechBullish

‍Start Those Sizzling Summers

So there you have it, folks! Some sizzling strategies to keep your team engaged during the dog days of summer. We've covered everything from virtual reality tasks (it's like a company outing in cyberspace!) to creating your very own office sports teams (just remember, teamwork makes the dream work, am I right?). With these tips, you'll transform your workplace into a summer paradise that keeps everyone motivated, productive, and maybe even a little sun-kissed.

As the days get hotter and the temptation to run off to the nearest beach grows stronger, just remember that with a little creativity, flexibility, and a whole lot of team spirit, you can keep your employees feeling valued and engaged throughout the summer season. Now go forth, apply these tips, and conquer the summer like the all-star HR professional you are! And don't forget sunscreen!

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