We have all faced the last couple of hours before the weekend—a nice, warm, sunny Friday afternoon. Does anyone really put forth maximum effort during that slight lull before the workweek is done? If you were to check your social media accounts, I would bet that you would have a large number of tweets and Facebook comments coming in at around 4:00 every Friday. After working 39 hours per week, I have to say that I can sympathize with this feeling of “I’m almost there.” This thought can be very distracting.

If this describes you or your employees, do not get frustrated. Feeling anxious before the weekend is normal, but there is no denying that it does not help people looking to finish their work. Fortunately, there are a couple things you and your employees can do to stay motivated and still be productive during this crucial time:

4 Productive Ways to Spend the Last Hour on a Friday

1. Hold a department meeting and outline the next week

There is naturally a slowing of productivity as you near the weekend, so consider taking that time and get everyone in your department (or company) together. This is a great opportunity for employees to voice various work concerns, update everyone on what someone is currently working on, and outline the big projects on the horizon. Having these weekly meetings also boosts morale and allows everyone a chance to have a voice about what is going on within the office. This allows you to stay motivated and still get something done while giving the employees a break. And after all, no employee is going to be unproductive when they’re in a meeting with their boss.

2. Cross training

You can also utilize this vital time for training or cross training purposes. This will allow your employees to take a break from their daily activities and get some valuable and informative training under their belts. This will ultimately create well rounded employees who can do more than just what is required. This approach also forces employees to work because they will be interacting with others as opposed to sitting at their desks; starting at a computer screen. In fact, employees will probably thank you for getting them up and moving around the office.

3. Consider cutting lose an hour early

Another option is to provide leaving early as an incentive throughout the week if an employee does x, y, and z. Doing so may help increase production throughout the week when people are more motivated. However for most companies, shortening the work week simply is not an option. If this is the case, consider allowing your employees to work an extra 15 minutes each day, and then leaving early on a Friday. This may sound modern and unconventional, but many companies are finding that this is preferable to employees, and the same amount of work gets done.

4. Save the mundane projects for last

If you have a project that is somewhat mindless, such as data entry or taking surveys, save it until the last hour on a Friday, and urge your employees to do the same. It is significantly more difficult to write an article or work on a very involved project when your mind has checked-out for the weekend, so save the boring stuff for last.

It is only natural to start drifting off prematurely with thoughts of camping or fishing trip, but these are simply ways to get more out of that time, reinvigorate your employees, and create a better work environment for all.

Author's Bio: 

Amanda DiSilvestro is a writer on topics ranging from social media to company credit cards. She writes for an online resource that gives advice on topics including online business credit cards to small businesses and entrepreneurs for the leading B2B Directory, Business.com.