Are your employees mentally clocking out early?

How to motivate staff on Friday afternoons


As the clock ticks closer to the end of the working week, it’s not uncommon for employees to get restless and for productivity to wane. Those looking forward to the weekend suddenly find it difficult to focus on their work, with many workers mentally ‘checking out’ by early Friday afternoon.

A recent survey of more than 2,000 office staff, conducted by British Airways, found that the typical workweek, in terms of productivity, is over before 3 pm on a Friday. In fact, from approximately 2.40 pm onward, employees are more likely to be found on social media sites, online shopping or arranging their weekend plans than dealing with the important tasks on their desks.

With the average workday not actually over until 5 pm, this results in at least two hours of wasted business potential per week. Taking back your company’s Friday afternoons is an important step towards improving productivity and meeting weekly targets.

As a manager, you will likely need to utilise all your leadership and management training to effectively influence a Friday afternoon change in the workplace. Altering the attitudes of your weekend-keen employees may be a challenge, so here are three quick motivation tips that can help.

Take an invigorating break

Often, the fatigue of a long and busy workweek is a main contributor to the lull in productivity. To boost energy among your staff, consider gathering everyone together for a quick invigorating break. Try a group stretching session or encourage employees to take a 15 minute walk outside.

Boost comfort

If the temperature of your office is too hot or cold, your employees may be more likely to daydream about the more pleasant temperatures they can enjoy over the weekend. By monitoring the air flow, temperature and quality, you can encourage employees to work at their maximum productivity levels.

Provide snacks

Handing out high-energy snacks in the mid-afternoon may be just enough to reinvigorate a tired employee. Additionally, doing this can help create a sense of effort and reward, where staff work harder to earn the treats you offer them.

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