Rainy days and blue Mondays always get me down
Today marks the third Monday in January which, on face-value, seems quite an unremarkable date. However and quite unfortunately, today has become known as the most depressing day of the year, the dreaded "Blue Monday".
Factors including bad weather, personal debt and the length of time since Christmas and until summer arrives, contribute to a downturn in mood for many people. This bad mood can mean employers have to deal with issues such as absenteeism, lack of productivity and resignations.
In fact, 'Blue Monday' signifies the day when more employees, particularly Millennials (those born between 1980 and 2000), hand in their letter of resignation than any other.
Employees cite a lack of interest in their development, lack of opportunities to utilise their skills and lack of recognition for the contribution they make as some of the reasons behind wanting to leave their job.
Employers should seek to tackle these matters head on, to show that they are committed to their employees' progression and greater well-being.
Dealing with 'heat of the moment' resignations
It is expected that employers will receive more "heat of the moment" resignations during this time of year than any other. If you do receive an unexpected resignation, you should make sure that the employee is given the opportunity to reflect on their decision during a reasonable "cooling-off" period. You should then meet again with the employee to ensure that you are satisfied that the employee has had an opportunity for calm reflection on their decision to resign and that resignation is really what they intended.
The month of January, as a whole, is a period during which many unauthorised absences occur. Employers should be aware of the pressures staff may be under and be proactive in their approach to the 'Monday Blues'. We recently discussed Seasonal Affective Disorder and the steps employers can take to help employees who are struggling during the winter months.
A proactive approach will ensure both employers and employees do not fear the unhappiest time of the year.