Now that summer has ended and vacations begin to dwindle down around the office, some employees may find it difficult to get back in the swing of things. Weeks spent in a tropical location, Fridays where the workday ends hours early, or just a general sense of relaxation throughout the past few months can certainly be debilitating once these luxuries have begun to slow down. With that said, productivity around the office can be greatly affected.

Keeping your team motivated and active is a priority that every business leader understands, but doing so after the summer season can be slightly more difficult. Consider a number of team-building activities or daily acts of inspiration to spark your employees’ drive once again.

Host fun events

One way to get your team out of this post-summer melancholy is to take their minds off work for short periods of time. For example, employees may be more inclined to eat lunch privately at their desks, but offering to host a catered lunch or pay for a meal at a nearby restaurant can quickly turn a day of gloom around.

Get creative with the breaks you offer your employees. Hosting team breaks in which each staff member takes part in a shared activity can be fun, and can also build strong relationships among your team. These can include anything like office yoga, or a walk around the building or to a nearby market. If you can accommodate for longer breaks, having your employees take part in activities like bowling, sporting events, scavenger hunts, or educational games can be extremely beneficial.

Make meetings casual

Meetings following a week of vacation can be extremely difficult for employees still trying to shake their post-break bleakness. Start these group gatherings off on a high note, and in a way that engages everyone in the room. Ask obscure questions that could spark a fun conversation, or start with a small activity, like a joint effort on a Sporcle quiz. With laughter being the first experience, meetings will then feel much more casual.

Encourage dress-down days

One of the more exhausting acts following a summer break that managers may not consider is the necessity to dress up for work. While not all offices require this, those that do should host dress-down days, or as many know them as, casual Fridays (though they can be any day of the week). So long as the outfits are work appropriate, allow employees to wear t-shirts or shorts. Encourage them to have fun with it before a weekend of sporting events, for example. Ask them to wear the jersey of their favorite team. It may seem small, but even a change of work clothes can inspire a more casual environment, and thus a less stressful one.