The world is different every time we encounter and recover from a crisis. Many things are changing right now, including the way we work, communicate, lead our lifestyle, and more.
Similar changes will be visible on the corporate side of things as well. The industry or sector that emerges on top after a downturn may not be the same one that was on top before. These things are not in our control, but whether or not your business survives, the issue at hand depends on how you treat your customers and employees. They are your business, not your product, not your brand name.
The competition will always be a part of what you do, and someone might have better packages, some might have more flexibility and features. What matters is, caring for your people, making sure they are ok—keeping your customers and employees happy with what you have. Consistency can be significant merit, especially in times like these.
A sentence from the movie Thor: Ragnarok makes much sense for the current time, "Asgard is not a place, it's a people." For us mere mortals, it would be, "Your organization is not a place, it's the people." And it is true.
If you lose all your employees, what will you have? A big empty space? Too many chairs and tables? Loads of laptops and desktops?
Employees are your assets, and with the world in turmoil, it is essential to let them know that you value them. Here are some tips to improve the way you engage your employees during these challenging times and beyond.
Thanks to your work buddies, office life seems bearable amongst the daily routine and stress that comes with the job. Every job has its challenges; if you say yours does not have one, that's good. Have a buddy system, make groups that are on a specific topic or hobby.
Let people interact with each other. Encourage your employees to have video calls with their work buddies, post a fun message, GIF, or video, or let any employee recognize another with a kudos for a job well done. This recognition could even turn into a coffee break or a team lunch, even if it has to be virtually.
Remember the H in HR – Human
We are all humans, and it is not a bad thing to act like one. Each one of us has a family; including those with kids and others with their “fur babies.” Working from home can be a tricky situation, but we all are doing our best to make things seamless.
Reach out to your employees; have a random chat. Don't start with "we need to talk," or "can we talk?" since these phrases can be scary during a downturn. Be there if they need you, and prepare to be a little more flexible. Employees' mental health and professional development still is a priority no matter where they work from or what position they hold in your organization.
Christopher Baggott Chief Executive Officer of Medlinks Cost Containment, Inc. and Medlinks Staffing, LLC.
“Our staff has praised the increased communications level Workmates delivers. We use it to communicate important project matters and give staff specific ‘kudos’ or even recognize their birthdays. More importantly, we use Workmates to clarify important project details that needed rapid dissemination among the entire team.”
Sometimes people find it difficult to express themselves, and things that needed attention never sees the light of the day. Pulse surveys are the best way to keep a check on your workforce. Make sure you don't have more than five questions, and if the survey is anonymous, you will receive honest answers. It's ok to be scared; we all are afraid of the unknown.
A weekly check-up on how they are doing and can you help in any way to make it easier will be helpful. An employee pulse survey is a good way to keep track of your employee’s mental and emotional state and boost employee experience.
Additional resource: Interested in learning more about pulse surveys, recognition and rewards, employee engagement, and more? Download the HR Cloud Features Guide today.
Just because you are not in the same location does not mean that you abandon your engagement strategy. Plan activities that all your employees can participate in. Even silly games like never have I ever, and bingo can be a mood booster. Share games that they can play with their family and friends after the office as well.
Everyone reacts differently to stress, and it is vital to have someone people can speak to. Arrange for counseling sessions for your employees to make sure that they have help while dealing with stress. WFH needs discipline, and with the lockdown stepping out for a break can cause anxiety. Having a safe space where they can open up about what is bothering them, things can get a little easier.
The new normal might not be something that we expected or even imagined. But that is what we have today, and we have to make the best out of the given situation. Make sure your workforce is taken care of. Times like these have a lasting impression, make sure you leave a good one. Whether they are an executive or a manager, everyone needs a listening ear.
Your employees are important to make sure they know that.
About Author: Rose Moore is a strategic HR generalist professional with expertise in HR Operations, Compensation & Benefits, Business Partnering, Labor Laws, Talent Acquisition and Development Activities. A voracious reader, you will almost always find me reading or digging information on the latest trends, collating articles on trending software and solutions, reading the why’s and how’s of a phenomenon. She can be reached at email@example.com.
Employee-Centric Engagement, Internal Communications, and Recognition