COVID-19 has brought with it several challenges. Stress levels are high for many people, including those who found themselves suddenly working from home as lockdown started. Managers had to switch gears without much time for preparation. What lessons have we learned over the last several months that can give you the tools you need to manage your team during a crisis?
Recognize the Impact on Everyone
Regardless of each individual’s situation, know that COVID-19 has had an impact on everyone. For some, working from home has been the culmination of a professional dream, so they will have a different perspective. For others, it’s a struggle, and they like the structure than an office provides. There may also be employees who have been affected directly by the virus. Managers need to be empathetic to everyone’s experience during the crisis.
Review Sick Leave Policies
This is also a good time to review your current sick leave policies. Employees are looking to their employers to be leaders in workplace changes that will positively impact their lives moving forward. For many, the concern over sick leave, if they or someone in their family is affected, can be enough to send their stress skyrocketing. Look into new potential policies and make changes.
With more workers at home, you also need to establish effective methods of communication. And more communication is better in situations like this. Online video conferencing tools are readily available, and you can make use of them for team or company-wide meetings. But you may also want to improve your email game or use chat tools such as Slack.
Provide Access to Tools
To that end, you should also provide your team with access to these and other tools to ensure they have everything they need to be successful while working remotely. A company Zoom account, for instance, will allow them to have team meetings longer than 40 minutes. VPNs or remote desktop access will give them secure access to their work.
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