It’s officially 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. 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
Have an upcoming deadline or project that might need sign-offs and approvals? Be prepared to plan around out-of-office schedules and your colleagues’ vacation plans.
2. Plan Ahead
Speaking of vacation plans, make sure to share yours with your teammates so you don’t leave them in the lurch while you’re soaking up the sun. Creating a shared calendar for your team will help everyone keep track of when others are available or unavailable this summer. Don’t forget to schedule some time for yourself — a little R&R can do wonders for your productivity!
3. Keep Cool (But Not Too Cool)
Did you know that temperature plays a big role in your productivity? According to one study, the optimal climate for increased productivity is between 70 and 72 degrees. 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.
4. Stay Inspired
If the summer slump leaves you needing a little motivation, The Everygirl compiled a great playlist of inspiring TED talks sure to send your productivity into overdrive.
5. 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 finally restructure the reports you haven’t had time to tackle. There is always work to be done and you’ll thank yourself in the fall when schedules get busier and deadlines seem to get shorter.
6. Be Flexible
Lifesize CEO Craig Malloy wrote an article for Fast Company last summer about the importance of remaining flexible in the summer months. As long as expectations are set, studies have shown that employees with modified work schedules (think summer Fridays) show increased productivity in the summers.
7. Test Out New Tools
Summer is a great time to trial run new tools you’ve been thinking about implementing. Whether it’s a note-taking tool or a video conferencing app, you probably have a little more time to test out a few options and see what features make sense for your team.
8. Learn How to Own Your Meetings
Maybe it’s the vacation-mode daydreams or just the heat melting our thought process, but meetings seem to be a little more distracted and fall off course more easily in summer. Keep yours on track with our How to Own Your Meetings Guide. We cover everything from agenda templates to finding the best time to meet for distributed teams.