5 Ways to Boost Employee Productivity in Summer Everyone's been waiting for warmer weather. But a little summer fun doesn't mean your productivity should take a hit. Here's how to keep employees excited and motivated this season.

By Entrepreneur Europe Staff Originally published

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While you might be looking forward to summer personally, in your professional life, it can be a nightmare. Small-business owners here in Europe know too well the dip in productivity that comes with the warmer months, as employees round out their social calendars, take holidays, and just generally become less focused on work.

Enjoying leisure time is a key part of maintaining productivity overall, but the work-life balance is less balanced as spring ends. Fortunately, you can give your staff the opportunity to have fun this summer and still keep productivity up.

Here are five ways entrepreneurs and thier managers can embrace summer fun while keeping employees excited and motivated about work at the same time:

1. Embrace flexibility.

Instead of mandating certain hours worked or tasks done each day, set weekly or monthly goals for employees. Staffers respond well to flexibility and autonomy, so you can capitalize on that goodwill by demonstrating that you understand summer is a fun time and their attention may be elsewhere at times. Show that as long as the work gets done, you are happy, and they are likely to deliver.

2. Be clear about goals.

Setting goals for the end of each month or even the summer as a whole is a key step, but be sure to also explain to employees why the goals are in place at all. Staffers are more motivated to do their work (and do it well) when they feel connected to projects and outcomes. This is especially important to bear in mind when you know they have other personal projects and obligations they're more interested in devoting time to in the summer months.

3. Work on team-building.

Team-building is essential all year round, but in the summer, you have more options than your standard indoor activities. Dedicate a lunch break to organizing a game in a local park. Host an outdoor happy hour. Host less important meetings while taking a stroll with the attendees.

Socializing comes more naturally when it's nice out, so take advantage of the opportunity to give employees a break and build relationships within the company.

4. Implement a reward structure.

Be sure that whatever goals you've set for the period include rewards. A team with the most sales by mid-summer might earn a catered lunch, for instance, or the individual with the highest output at the end of each month could be given an additional paid day off. There are plenty of reasons to skeeve off work in the summer, so give them reasons to stay focused instead.

5. Stick to more individualized tasks.

Finally, schedule your goals and necessary tasks in advance, taking care to keep more individualized ones in the summertime. Employees who must rely on teams or managerial approval to do a majority of their work will struggle to get much done when a key member or leader is out on holiday. The less they have to rely on each other during the months of unpredictable time off, the better.

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