COVID-19 has forced companies to adopt 100% remote working to ensure the safety of their employees. The health and security challenges have also brought upon newer challenges of emotional well-being. Employees now deal with unexpected changes at work and personal life with added stress and anxiety.
In this crisis, organizations must focus on helping their workforce navigate this turmoil & ensuring mental wellness.
While working remotely for an uncertain period, employees tend to feel left-out and detached. This impacts their productivity as they are less likely to be engaged with their work. Companies must connect with their employees more frequently than before. It can be simple discussions about how they are managing the situation at home, managing essential services like groceries and medicines, and whether the elderly or dependents are doing fine and need help. This gives a tremendous sense of comfort and belonging to them.
This is a time when employees may feel nervous about their health and the uncertainties lying ahead of them. Managing a completely remote working team is possible through transparent and frequent communication. Consistent interaction and updates from the employer give a sense of security and help keep them motivated to work productively and efficiently.
When we are all mostly indoors with restricted movements, we hardly get to see anyone except our own family. Missing office, colleagues, and social interactions can have its own impact. Video conferencing can be a real boon in this situation even if the meeting happens to be virtual, giving the much needed social interaction. Further, getting out of our comfort wears and dressing up for a virtual meet can bring in some excitement and pep us up.
It becomes more critical for employees to have a clear vision of their goals when working from remote workplaces—setting Clear deliverable and specific metrics to measure them help employees to stay focused and drive them towards the objectives.
An expectation, employees often have from their organization is the opportunity to learn, up-skill, and grow. This is the ideal time to encourage employees to take up online courses to upgrade their skills and talents in their respective domains. The hours that they save in commuting can now be meaningfully utilized. Many organizations have significantly invested in e-learning courses to build a workforce that is up to date with the latest and best practices.
Rewards and recognition are great motivators, especially in these times. Acknowledging the smallest of their achievements will motivate and inspire employees to work harder towards their goals. A pat on the back for meeting the deliverable or stretching an hour more at work can go a long way. E Appreciation Cards are a great way to place the same on record as well.
While working remotely, we all do miss our water cooler and elevator chats, the tea breaks, and post-lunch strolls with colleagues. Given the high social currency, these have, it is essential to create such intentional opportunities for casual and friendly conversations. Setting up an hour for the team every week to meet virtually and have fun conversations could be a great way to engage employees.
There is, however, no rule-book to keep your workforce happy and motivated. Every team is different and requires different nurturing. These are the few things that have worked for us. We would be delighted to learn about the new ideas implemented in your organization.
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