January 16th is Blue Monday. It has been calculated to be the gloomiest day of the calendar year. This is because the day comes around at the midway point of the coldest, greyest month. It also occurs when the last pay day is a distant memory – so there’s a potential problem when the first winter fuel bills begin to drop through the letter box. Dark nights, shorter periods of daylight, and credit card bills all contribute to the woe too!
To boil it all down here’s a helpful formula that’s tremendous fun to contemplate and memorise for meal times, and pub conversations:
Weather=W, Debt=D, Time since Christmas=T, Time since failing our New Year's resolutions=Q, Low motivational levels=M and the feeling of a need to take action=NA
Ergo – [W+(D-d)]xTQ/MxNA = BLUE MONDAY
Sadly, the validity of the whole formula was discredited when news emerged that it was a publicity stunt devised by a company called Sky Travel. No actual survey or test was performed. Despite the playful origins of the Blue Monday theory, it holds water if you don’t apply too much scientific scrutiny.
“This Blue Monday theory has given us pause for thought here at Red Letter Days For Business. What if there is some hard fact to this? What can be done to improve staff motivation at this, admittedly, dispiriting time of year?” said Bill Alexander, CEO at Red Letter Days For Business. “We think it’s important to look after your team with an engaging rewards and incentives scheme to kick off the New Year and bypass this gloomy day before we all get too fixated on it.”
Staff motivation is key to the success of any good organisation. Your customer facing staff, as well as the management and backroom complement, all need to be motivated, especially at this time of year. In 2017, 47 % of HR professionals say that they are aiming to promote the importance of employee rewards, according to a study carried out by Future Workplace. Employee engagement and retention are high on the list of priorities for most businesses, seeing as the turning of a new year can bring about thoughts of career development and looking to your competitors for a similar job.
January is a particularly hard time because by now it’s been British winter for a very long time and the cold weather has begun to take its toll on most of us. Blue Monday signifies an opportunity to bring about awareness of the fact that we all need to look out for one another and ourselves that little bit more come this particularly arduous and rough part of the year. Hopefully, your Blue Monday will pass you by without incident or you get pleasantly surprised by your employer instead.