It’s finally starting to feel like summer, and that means temperatures are on the rise, out-of-office messages are popping up more frequently and the unfortunate trend of decreased productivity is about to set in across the Northern Hemisphere (don’t worry Southern Hemisphere’ians — just absorb the tips now and use them in six months).
If you’re hoping to prevent the summer slump from hitting your office, we’ve put together some tips to make the most out of the slower-paced season so you can maximize productivity while still enjoying a little downtime.
1. Be Proactive and Plan Ahead
Have an upcoming deadline or project that might need sign-offs and approvals? Be prepared to plan around out-of-office schedules and vacation plans. Just by creating a shared calendar with your team, you can keep track of when others are available or unavailable and make sure to schedule some time for yourself — a little R&R can do wonders for your productivity!
2. Keep Cool (but Not Too Cool)
Did you know that temperature plays a big role in your productivity? Studies find that you are actually the most productive when your workspace is right around 71.6ºF (22ºC). If you work in a shared space and can’t convince facilities to budge on the thermostat, bring in a desk fan or heater to keep you comfortable — it’ll be worth the investment.
3. Stay Inspired
If the summer slump leaves you needing a little motivation, try listening to a productivity playlist or podcast to keep your brain gears turning. YouTube and Spotify have playlists dedicated to increasing your productivity levels, so you can block out distracting sounds and be able to work, regardless of where you might be.
4. Resist the Urge to Slack
If you work in an industry where summer seasonality provides a little breathing room, take advantage! Get a jump on next quarter’s projections and budget, organize those storage closets, zero out that inbox or try out those productivity apps you’ve been meaning to sign up for (Lifesize is free for 14 days!). There is always work to be done, and you’ll thank yourself in the fall when schedules get busier and deadlines seem to come faster.
5. Be Flexible
In a Deloitte Millennial Survey, 80% of participants stated that flexible work arrangements have a very or fairly positive impact on their overall work-life balance. This is extremely important in the summer seasons — maintaining balance and allowing modified work schedules (such as summer Fridays or shorter work days) can actually increase productivity and overall office well-being and happiness.
6. Meet over Video
Maybe it’s the vacation-mode daydreams or just the heat melting our thought process, but meetings are just plain hard in the summer time. In our Eight Challenges Solved by Video Conferencing guide, we provide you a few tips and tricks to meet better with video — from how to manage a distributed work force to creating a consolidated and interoperable company culture.