The COVID-19 crisis has thought us many things when it comes to flexibility and adaptation. In these difficult times, openly communicating and connecting to one another is essential for our mental well-being. Since it feels like we’re cut off from the world, communication with other individuals is the only thing that keeps us sane.
Similarly, the only way your business can function and survive through hardships is by nurturing healthy communication with your employees! As this pandemic is one big lesson to us all, what exactly did we learn about workplace communication from it?
What we’ve learned about employee communication during this pandemic
Reach out frequently
During the covid-19 crisis, the first thing that we learned was that we’re all in this together. This means that we have to fight the pandemic together by following health regulations and the government’s recommendations. But what does it have to do with businesses and employees?
Staying at home has become mandatory for many citizens. Therefore, they tend to feel isolated and lonely even though they are working from home! So, it’s up to you as a manager to engage your employees, reach out to them frequently and ensure they’ve got everything they need to survive through this uncertain period. Checking up on them will make them feel valued which will result in improved productivity.
Mindfully assign tasks
Since working from home is now a thing, you might need to re-evaluate the ways your company operates. This means that you have to start the change from the root, aka you! If you want to keep your employees under the control and maintain their efficiency and productivity, change the way you assign tasks. How can you do that?
Pay attention to the qualities of your employees and assign tasks accordingly. Don’t just give orders! You’ll be surprised to find out that some people are more effective when working from home. So, be mindful when giving them assignments. Also, take special time to dedicate to each employee to ensure they understand what their task is. This is a stressful time for us all, so why not make it easier?
Focus on giving feedback
Communication is a two-way street. It’s an interaction that requires a reaction from both sides. So, giving feedback is an essential part of it. However, since we’re only digitally connected, feedback sometimes tends to be left out, which can cause confusion, anxiety, and other mixed emotions. So, what can you do?
Just like you expect your employees to get back to you once they’ve completed the task, it’s up to you to provide feedback on the assignment. Did you know that feedback can improve communication and create a team that cares about their work? That’s an ideal way of boosting team spirit, connecting with your team, and increasing their productivity.
Setting the schedule
Even though working from home provides people with freedom and flexibility to complete their tasks in their pajamas or lay in bed while working, most employees still require a certain structure throughout the day. Since you can’t organize their days completely, you can offer them help by creating shared schedules they all can follow. What do they include?
Shared schedules are the same for everyone in the company, no matter if you work from the office or home. They provide the needed structure while leaving enough space for flexibility and personal preferences which leads to improved workplace efficiency. For instance, you all can have a lunch break at the same and catch up!
Set clear goals when recruiting
Whether you work from the office or home, knowing what your final goal is can really help your team work towards those goals. Every company has a vision and mission they want to fulfill. So, it’s up to you to continue pursuing that path even if you’re going through the covid-19 crisis. So, what can you do?
If you’re employing new people, ensure they understand the companies mission, goals, and how to reach them. Even though each project may have a goal, you need to introduce it to every new employee that joins your team. Since you have to do it online, you need to come up with a suitable way of presenting your business to the newcomers. It may be a presentation, a welcoming conference call, or something else. Act according to your company’s culture.
Use adequate communication tools
Since people shifted to remote work during the covid-19 pandemic, various apps and communication tools have become more popular. Many companies use conference calls to hold meetings and stay in touch, while group chats have become our reality. But is there a quick, practical, and formal way of communicating with your employees?
Instead of using the Workplace by Facebook which tends to be unsafe and unreliable, consider Workplace by Facebook alternatives. They provide you with a safe environment for engaging with your employees and sharing important and confidential data. You won’t have to worry about not being able to reach your employees as necessary information will get to them!
Pay attention to mental health
Last, but not least, paying special attention to mental health is vital. Everyone is busy thinking about the virus and physical consequences it has on our bodies, while they neglect the importance of mental health! Isolation and social distancing may take a toll on us all, which can result in anxiety, depression, or similar symptoms or illnesses. So, what can you do?
Research digital healthcare startups and offer that as a benefit to your employees. If you don’t have a psychologist or a therapist in your team, it might be a good idea to hire someone externally to hold group therapies. However, you can also encourage emotion sharing and venting to help your employees get difficult things off their chests in a safe environment.
As you can see, we can draw conclusions and learn important lessons even from difficult life events such as the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s up to us whether we’ll learn how to adapt and use that newly-gained knowledge. Communication is an essential part of human life. Therefore, this situation can help us improve the way we interact once the whole craze is over.
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