While a few winter enthusiasts dismiss the winter blues, in North America’s coldest cities, just leaving the house can be an ordeal in the winter months. First, expect to take longer than usual to get properly geared up to walk out the door (that is, if you can find the hats, mitts and goggles required to face another icy day). People who drive to work also need to leave ample time to shovel out, scrape off and heat up their vehicles before hitting the road. Finally, anyone who takes public transit should brace themselves for delays, frozen appendages and ice-encrusted eyebrows.
Like it or not, the unique form of fatigue known as the winter blues is difficult to avoid. It can also take a toll on morale in the workplace. Fortunately, there are steps we can take to keep the winter blues under control while strengthening workplace communications and team building in ways that have a place in every season.
During the winter months, delays and emergencies are inevitable. Connect with employees and coworkers by creating a community grapevine on GetAssist with vital information about everyone’s status—who is at work, who is sick, who is running late, and who is working remotely. Use the grapevine to keep everyone in the loop, even if they are out or delayed due to an illness or weather emergency. The grapevine can also be used to offer assistance during emergencies (e.g., to help a coworker with a sick child locate a babysitter at the last minute).
An easy commute to work is one of the best ways to ensure everyone is in good spirits at the start of the day. While carpooling is a great idea in any season, during the coldest months of the year, a carpool is an especially effective way to cut down on the time, energy and stress related to commuting.
Play in the Snow
While retreating to Calgary’s network of underground malls is one way to survive the winter, there is little proof that food court cuisine and mall music are effective ways to lift one’s spirits during the coldest and darkest months of the year. Fortunately, as temperatures plummet, the city and surrounding region are teeming with activities to keep everyone warm, active, and invigorated. Use GetAssist to help organize a skating party, pick-up hockey team, ski weekend, or for something a bit off the beaten track, a dog sledding trip in the Bow Valley.
Share and Swap Winter Gear
Winter sports are fun, but they can be expensive. Beyond the cost of ice time and slope fees, there is the cost of buying everything from down jackets to skis to hockey equipment to snowmobiles. For people with children, replacing winter sports gear every season can be particularly expensive. Create a gear share or swap to help the gearheads in your office clear out their storage spaces and help everyone else get the winter gear they need to stay warm, active and upbeat throughout the winter month.