In a perfect world, your company would hum along with all the efficiency of a perpetual-motion machine. Unfortunately, we don’t live in that world, and inertia exerts its tiring effects on all of us. So how can you get your team members excited and performing at their best –– especially if you’ve worked together for months or even years? Fortunately, there are plenty of ways you can motivate your employees, and kickstart productivity using surprising but ultimately effective techniques. Here’s how:

Keep Your Team on Their Toes

When was the last time you took your employees out for lunch? Or how about to a new bar after work? Or how about this one: when was the last time you called an impromptu off day to focus on team building at an amusement park or other exciting locale? If it’s been over a year, or if you’ve never surprised your team with an unexpected treat, it’s long overdue. Spending quality time with your employees will encourage them to be more cohesive and collaborative –– and by extension –– productive. Plus, they’ll appreciate the gesture. Even a small token of appreciation can go a long way to build up goodwill among you and your employees.

Dedicate Space to Unwind

It’s very likely you’ve got at least one room in your home where you go when you want to get away from work for a while. Why shouldn’t there also be a place to decompress at the office too? If you’ve got a breakroom that goes underutilized, or any extra space in a common area, it may prove beneficial to set this space aside as a “no-work” zone. Stocking bookshelves with stimulating literature, or even setting up a video game system will help your employees relax, and focus on their work more effectively when they return to it. And for more innovative design ideas, you can contact office design companies for free consultations.

Introduce Some Healthy Competition

Incentive is a powerful motivational tool, and can help revitalize even the stalest office environment. So holding the occasional contest and rewarding exceptional performances will help energize your staff and boost their productivity at the same time. However, make sure to stay creative; holding the same competition every week, or giving out the same prizes will prove boring sooner rather than later. So remember to spice things up early and often.