Top 6 Tricks to Running a Successful Office Over the Holidays

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Boise Paper shares #HolidayOfficeSolutions for juggling end-of-year deadlines and running an efficient, effective workforce despite common December pitfalls

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Unexpected vacations, unreachable vendors and fast-approaching, end-of-year deadlines can make December a treacherous month to navigate for many offices. With the traditionally-harry half of the month on the horizon, the experts at Boise Paper, a division of Packaging Corporation of America (PCA), have compiled their top six tricks to help offices of all types operate efficiently and effectively through the end of the year.

“We’re experts at supporting and bolstering the daily success of office environments across the country,” said Mary Ignas, Sr. Director of Marketing for Boise Paper. “In December, when daily routines are disrupted, there are a few crucial time-management tips that can help ensure important tasks are getting accomplished, employees are happy and each workday is being maximized to its fullest potential.”

Boise Paper’s Top Six Holiday Time Management Tips

1) Create a Responsibility Calendar – Communication is key to getting things done right the first time. During the hectic holiday season, it’s not uncommon for a project manager or topic expert to be out of the office or unreachable, leaving the task of making a big decision or interpreting a next step to the second-in-command. Identify a leader or final decision maker for each day in the last two weeks of December and create a calendar showing employees who to reach out to each day for answers and approvals. Knowing who is empowered – and available – to make decisions takes the stress off of those at the office.

2) Identify the Must-Dos – When the office is short-staffed, only two types of projects get done: the “urgent projects” that must be done before the holiday ends and the “daily maintenance” tasks that keep your workplace and workload running like a well-oiled machine. Identify the top three tasks in each category and make sure these are delegated and covered even on your office’s slimmest days.

3) Move Up End-of-Month – National holidays and days off affect shipping and processing timelines in December. Anticipate these closures to ensure that the office starts the New Year on a positive and prepared note. This month, treat December 22 as the internal “end of month” for processing vendor payments, issuing invoices and ordering office supplies. Smart scheduling guarantees the office is stocked and ready for business on January 4.

4) Manage Great Expectations – Many employees and managers fall into the trap of assuming activity will be low during the last month of the year. The reality, however, is that an office-wide amount of work often falls to the shoulders of a few. Conduct a quick reality check with the questions below to better manage expectations of clients, supervisors and staff:

  • How much time do you have? Productivity will be low on short days and days with fun holiday events, as well as when the business is closed. Take a realistic look at the available time and consider task deadlines by only counting the productive hours in the remaining full-day business days.
  • Who is needed to do the work? Consider who is available to help. Few projects are true individual efforts. Take a look at the staffing of other departments and the assistance, or lack thereof, which can be counted on for important projects. Look for ways to collaborate with other departments and pool resources if possible.

5) Send Reminder Reminders – In the final hours before taking off, it’s easy for any employee – from intern to CEO – to forget to set out of office and voicemail messages. However, these are critical tools used by clients and business partners to keep work flowing. On December 17, send out a reminder for employees to communicate their schedules and set reminders. Remember, the best out of office messages set expectations for response times, provide a return date and list an alternate contact for immediate assistance.

6) Celebrate the Holiday Team – It’s not fun to come into work when the majority of colleagues are at home relaxing. A card, a surprise morning treat, casual office clothes or a catered lunch are small ways to create goodwill and comradery among the elite “holiday” team tasked with keeping the lights on.

Boise Paper manufactures a full line of quality papers for the office and home. Boise POLARIS® Multipurpose paper is performance guaranteed and has ColorLok® technology, promising more vivid colors, bolder blacks and faster drying. X-9® Multi-Use Copy paper has a 99.99% Jam-Free Guarantee and is backed by independent testing through Buyers Laboratory, Inc. Ask your supplier about the best Boise Paper products for your office.

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About Boise Paper:
Boise Paper is a division of Packaging Corporation of America, headquartered in Lake Forest, IL. Boise Paper manufactures a full line of quality papers including imaging papers for the office and home, printing and converting papers, and papers used in packaging, such as label and release papers. Through their Paper with Purpose™ promise, they commit to delivering excellent value while sustaining environmental, economic, and social resources for future generations. Keep current with news and events at http://www.BoisePaper.com.

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Lindsey Lucenta
L.C. Williams and Associates
+1 (312) 565-3900
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