Claire Huish: How can organisations spread festive cheer in the workplace?


More often than not employees are working longer and harder over the festive period, and they’re doing all this while also trying to find time to catch up with friends and family. It is tempting for business owners to think they have done all that is needed to keep staff motivated once they have arranged the office party. But the reality is, during the busy Christmas period, particularly in the hospitality sector, people need and often expect that little bit of extra recognition, to round the year off and keep up workplace momentum.

This can be anything from a gift from the organisation, or just a word of thanks, taking your team for a drink after work, or just rolling up your sleeves as it were, and working alongside them.

This year, at Bennett Hay, we are holding our annual party for all our colleagues and their partners in January, after the Christmas period, not only to kick off the New Year on a universally appreciative path, but also to treat all of our people after what always proves to be our busiest time. This is our main way of showing our gratitude for what is achieved throughout the year. We are also running a New Year’s resolution campaign, to encourage our team to use our new volunteering scheme with Benefacto, one of the many initiatives we have to keep our wellbeing balanced at Bennett Hay.

Our colleagues work at a range of sites, in many different sectors and services. When it comes to the guest experience, customers often want more around the festive period, at Bennett Hay, we like to think we go above and beyond all year round, but spreading festive cheer goes further than our own people, and into our hospitality offering.

Colleagues do need motivating and recognising all year round, and while it is important to reward the workforce over the festive period, employees should feel appreciated and inspired all year.

Claire Huish is colleague services manager at hospitality firm Bennett Hay