Managers plan chocolate and cakes for the most depressing day of the year

21 January 2019 -

Cake Blue Monday is an opportunity to motivate staff says CMI survey

CMI Insights

Managers have revealed to CMI that they plan to give staff sweet treats today, in an effort to boost morale on Blue Monday.

More than a third (35%) of the 940 leaders surveyed in the Manager’s Voice research said they would be buying treats for the office on the date that is often cited as the most depressing day of the year. It’s said that a combination of weather, workload and failed New Year’s resolutions leaves us feeling unmotivated, sad – and needing a little boost on 21 January.

Only three per cent of managers quizzed in the study said they believed Blue Monday to be ‘nonsense’ – and they told us there are various ways that they plan to lift spirits.


Most managers will be making a point of praising good work today – with 64% of them agreeing Blue Monday was the ideal time to act.

Read more: The CMI/Glassdoor top 20 companies use praise to keep morale high

However, a quarter (25%) will allow staff to finish early; 29% will encourage staff to take a lunch break – and 16% will go one further by taking the team to lunch or implementing a ‘dress down’ day.

Rob Wall, head of policy at CMI, says managers’ good intentions are positive for working culture.

“Any manager worth their salt knows that a happy workforce is a productive workforce,” he explains.

“Recognising hard work and valuing employees’ contributions – often in simple ways, such as by praising good work, buying treats or taking the time to talk to people – makes all the difference. Bringing cakes or chocolates into the workplace, on an occasional basis, can be an effective way of building morale and boosting performance.

“It might seem that Blue Monday doesn’t have much going for it but clearly our members at CMI don’t see it that way. They will be making a real effort to turn Blue Monday into a positive experience.”


Of course, managers are also facing their own woes on Blue Monday. The survey showed many had concerns over the economy (47%), while job-specific woes such as a lack of promotion (24%) career prospects (60%) and a lack of pay rise (36%) weighed on the minds of others.

More information of the Manager’s Voice survey is available here

Image: Shutterstock

Powered by Professional Manager