We have been facing the most unusual circumstances for over four months now. Companies and employees alike have fallen into some sort of “pandemic rhythm,” allowing them to survive. However, as we look towards the future, there’s no certainty to how long this will last. Companies are desperately trying to adapt to a long-term strategy for continuing to do business while also accommodating unknown obstacles. The best place to start? Taking care of your employees. Here are three strategies you must implement in order to maintain a happy and healthy team during a global pandemic.
Working from home can be incredibly isolating. Making yourself available to your team will give them a sense of comfort and support. And this is more than sending an email letting people know they can contact you. Therefore, go out of your way to check in with your employees frequently. Have conversations about their productivity, challenges they’re facing, and perhaps most importantly, how they are coping. Everyone is struggling with different battles right now, and a supportive hand goes a long way.
Your employees’ worlds have been turned totally upside down. Many are juggling working from home while also homeschooling and parenting full time, for instance. Appointments and vacations have been scheduled and rescheduled multiple times. As a result, flexibility will go miles and miles in building respect with your team during a pandemic. Over half of people who are telecommuting said they are experiencing burnout and overwork. Allowing flexibility will take one more concern off of their overloaded pandemic plates.
A lot of employees are navigating uncharted waters, unsure of how policies and procedures may have changed due to the extenuating circumstances, which means it’s up to you to proactively explain and encourage them. For example, with many employees working from home and travel plans put on hold, fewer people are requesting time off for vacations. This can lead to various problems, including team burnouts and employees stockpiling PTO. A proactive approach encouraging employees to step away from their desk will help to quell balance sheet problems and lead to a happier and healthier remote team.
What’s the one leadership skill all of these things have in common? Listening. Take the time to listen to your team members and accommodate their feedback while addressing their concerns. Use these tactics to support your team during a pandemic or any other challenging time. Interested in more management and hiring tips? Explore our Client Resources.