Promote Hobbies via Workplace Contests
People spend a significant part of their day at work. So much so that many complain about not being able to balance their personal life.
No matter the utilization level, most organizations don't encourage people to pursue things outside work. Employers see it as a conflict that investing time in a hobby might affect employee bandwidth.
Research has revealed that pursuing a hobby relieves stress and boosts confidence & self-esteem. These have a direct positive impact on workplace productivity.
Workplace contests can be fun & engaging way to promote hobbies for employees.
What are Contests?
Contests are already part of engagement initiatives at most organizations. Virtual contests especially gained popularity post-pandemic to engage remote or distributed teams.
The typical flow of a workplace contest is -
You create a problem statement or define the task participants need to complete.
Participants will be required to submit their entries by the pre-defined deadline.
All the entries are then evaluated by a jury or via public opinion to identify the winners.
Winners are recognized & rewarded.
Benefits of Aligning Contests to Hobbies
Your workplace is more diverse than you think. Diverse in personality traits, behaviours, or beliefs, rather than gender, religion, or ethnicity. But engaging a diverse team for better collaboration has its challenges.
While designing a team-building activity, it's imperative to keep it aligned with people's interests & likings. When the task or activity intrigues people, they engage more effectively.
When you integrate engagement contests with hobbies, it becomes a play. It encourages employees to spend some time on their hobbies & explore their creative side.
How to run a successful Contest
Planning & execting There are a few key things to consider in planning and executing successful workplace contests.
Take Employee Opinion
We never recommend going by anecdotes of decision makers in creating engagement activities. Asking the target audience about their interests & hobbies is the best way to start. After all, your motive for employee activities is to engage and bond teams.
Have a Communication Plan
More often than not, a poor communication strategy results in dud participation. When you create a plan for the activity, make sure to emphasize communication. Allow employees an appropriate time to prepare & submit the entries. On average, for a contest that runs for a week, there should be at least 2-3 communications planned throughout the event. The idea is to keep the participants appraised on the event stage, participation, deadlines & rewards.
Try to include Audience Opinion in the Evaluation
Engagement contests aren't hard business decisions where you need an expert panel. Jury-based evaluations often lack transparency and also is time-consuming. Making the entries accessible to the audience to vote & interact with, is a much better alternative. For one, it makes the evaluation objective & transparent. Additionally, it also recognizes the efforts of all the participants in front of peers. A win-win for all.
Include custom perks for Winners
A contest is a competition by design and needs to have identifiable winners. Incentives play a crucial role here in motivating people to participate. It enhances engagement multi-folds. Allowing participants to choose their perk enhances the value of the reward. You can define the budget and let the winners choose. Digital gift cards offer an easy solution for this.
Useful Tool (Free)
Revvi offers a free employee engagement tool with ready-to-use engagement & team building activity templates. It has a template "Creative Contests" that'll allow you to create & run virtual contests within minutes.
Setting up the contest will involve basic configurations like submission format, deadline & visibility. Once all the submissions are in, the audience can review participant entries on a shared digital event board. The audience can add their reactions to support an entry & a live leaderboard helps track the standings. It makes the overall experience social & rewarding.
Try it! You no longer have to rely on google forms, drive uploads & a jury-based subjective evaluation.