We are slowly creeping up on April 15, except that the next month will pass much more quickly for the accountants in the trenches. How can managers help alleviate any stress in the workplace around their accountants’ busy seasons, like tax time? If you’re looking for things you can do to take action now, here are 5 ways that you can start making the next month much more bearable.
1. Hire a part-time assistant.
The first and most impactful thing you can do is hire temporary or part-time help during the busy season. A temporary worker can help with basic paperwork, running errands or taking on other tasks to allow the accountants to focus on what they really need to be doing. You can partner with a local staffing agency who will provide great financial job candidates who will fit right in with your company and be a great addition as supplemental help to your staff.
2. Host a lunch.
Show your accounting staff that you appreciate them by hosting a lunch once a week. Allow them to take a break from their work and enjoy a catered meal. It can be from a favorite restaurant or you can create themed events that allow your team to drop what they’re doing and enjoy themselves.
3. Have short breaks.
Don’t let your staff get burned out by not taking breaks. Insist on short breaks throughout the day to recharge everyone. For added fun, create office games that will help break up the day’s monotony. Make sure they don’t take too long and that they’re not a surprise or your staff might be more frustrated instead of relieved. You can also give your team the autonomy to take breaks when they need one, just make sure they take one because focusing on work all day long can lead to worse performance and more results.
4. Provide healthy snacks.
Many people have the unhealthy habit of stress eating. Try to counter this by providing a selection of healthy snacks and bottled water to replace chocolate, afternoon coffee, or sugary sodas. If someone has easy access to healthy foods, like fruit or granola bars, they are more likely to choose them for their pick me up. Having a consistent and healthy diet will also help your accountants have more energy and produce at a consistently high level throughout a long period of extended work hours.
5. Throw a big party.
At the end of tax season, or whatever your busiest season is for accounting, host a big party. Go all out. Have a barbeque and invite the families. Or, host a pot luck where everyone can participate. Or, for something fancier, rent out a local bar or event space and have music and cocktails. That party will also become a great motivation for your team as they will look forward to the stress relief.