We are all living through a hard time, a period of uncertainty and volatility. It is a completely new situation for people, a total shutdown of the economy and social isolation. For companies, finding a way forward can be daunting. Maintaining employee morale during this time is crucial. Here are a few tips to help your firm look after the wellbeing of workers.
1. Set priorities
Circumstances are shifting constantly. Everything has changed. When the situation is chaotic, the best course of action is to take a time out and reassess your situation. It is a good time to reexamine your priorities in light of new conditions, to focus on the important things and let go of what is unimportant. It is time to get everyone working on the same page, knowing with clarity what the company’s goals are given the new circumstances.
2. Give your employees some wiggle room.
Employees are undergoing a period of high stress – dealing with all of the restrictions imposed by the pandemic like social distancing, working from home, and attempting to isolate themselves. They may have children at home because of school closures, and may be caring for older family members who need to quarantine.
The best thing that companies can do for their employees during this time is to give them greater freedom with their jobs to allow them to handle their increased personal responsibilities. Employees should be given greater flexibility with their work hours, allowing them to decide the best time to work. Companies need to be more tolerant if some tasks happen to slip through the cracks now and then.
3. Solicit feedback
It is especially important to find out how your employees are faring now, how they are handling their lives and their jobs. Managers need to find out what they can do to support their workers. Company leaders can do this by adopting an open-door policy for employees, or taking the time to meet with them informally, such as a coffee break.
Another way to get feedback is by sending out a quick pulse survey with just a few questions about how employees are doing.
4. Schedule activities to help employees keep in touch
With everyone working from home, people may feel more isolated. Companies should use technology to help bring workers together, with such things as videoconferencing. Many companies are scheduling online social activities, such as video lunches, to help maintain togetherness.
Companies should look for ways to help their communities. This will help employees gain an increased sense of meaning and purpose. It will help to improve their emotional wellbeing during a stressful time.