With the holidays quickly approaching, your staff may feel a bit more distracted than usual. The following three tips will help keep everyone on track and motivated.

Hello autumn, so long summer! The seasons have changed, and so has what’s on your employees’ minds. With the holidays quickly approaching, your staff may feel a bit more distracted than usual with school events, vacations, and upcoming parties to plan and organize way ahead of time – and less inclined to do their work in the process. As the boss, you can help keep your team on track and motivated while still keeping things festive in the office with the following three tips.

Set goals.

When employees have a lot of extracurricular activity going on, it can be tempting to do enough just to get by at work because they have so much to do once they exit through those office doors in the evening. Set clear goals and due dates on projects and assignments to maintain focus. That way, when an employee comes in on Monday morning he knows exactly what it is he needs to accomplish for the week in order to meet the set goal for the department. Remind your team often of the goals you’ve set and have monthly meetings to check in on what’s going on, set new goals, and send an email with said goals laid out for everyone to keep in mind throughout the month.

Adhere to deadlines.

I personally think that setting deadlines is a good policy year-round in the workplace, but if your office is pretty lax on when to turn projects in, this is a good time of year to start assigning deadlines. Making sure there are clear due dates in place for your employees keeps everyone on the same page and provides less room for any miscommunication. Along with the deadlines, work on having the entire team provide progress updates for each department to ensure progress is in place for the goals you’ve set. Find ways to take initiative when you can and offer to help out when the workload hits crunch time deadlines – especially if your load is a little less heavy than others!

Reward your team!

To keep the giving spirit alive throughout the holidays, and to thank each department for all of their hard work for the year, be sure to reward them! Give small incentives when employees go above and beyond their set goals, be a Starbucks gift card for a delicious red cup holiday latte, or an unexpected desk treat like a handful of lottery tickets! You can also reward your entire team periodically to thank them for their overall hard work – throwing a few holiday parties, hosting a Halloween potluck and encourage everyone to dress up are just a few ways to say thanks!