17 March, 2020
How To Boost Your Teams’ Culture When Implementing A Work From Home Policy (Courtesy of COVID19)
On March 11th 2020 The World Health Organization declared the COVID19 virus as a pandemic, with national leaders urging citizens to avoid travel and all non essential contact. As a result of this businesses have had to face the reality of remote working, with companies such as Ford, Google and Unilever making it mandatory for there employees to work from home.
Many businesses are hesitant about granting their employees permission to work from home, as it eliminates face to face interaction between employees, which can have negative effects. Research has also highlighted that remote worker’s experience greater feelings of isolation and loneliness.
Business leaders often worry about the potential decrease in culture and alignment if their employees are not working in their business environment. However, the modernization of workforce, due to the development of new technology means that organisations can maintain their culture and align workforce even if they are isolated. Join us we explore how your business can maintain a strong culture and alignment during the COVID19 pandemic.
Communication is key
“Remote working fails everyone when good communication isn’t cultural”. There is no benefit in simply giving your employees a laptop and letting them venture off into the sunset. No matter where your employees are located your communication with them needs to be consistent, so that you can support them and help tackle any challenges they may face.
Tip 1: Hold a weekly meeting with all of your team – you can do this using tools like Zoom or Join me. Ensure that you dedicate a sufficient amount of time to each meeting, and plan the agenda beforehand.
Tip 3: Set SOPs – Set guidelines about email response times, the sharing of information and even management tools. Ensure that your employees have a clear understanding of how and when to communicate with each other.
Tip 4: Continue to share your business vision – even during challenging times its important that your employees continue to understand the business mission, vision and values, as it will help to motive them, thus increasing productivity.
It’s been argued that one of the most important factors that separates high and low performing companies is the sense of belonging, that employees feel. One of the best ways to create a sense of belonging within your business is do through communication.
Encourage Employee to employee engagement
Although employees are working from home it is important that employees continue to share information, and give each other feedback. This will help to maintain the quality of employees work, whilst allowing them to feel supported.
A Marketing expert said “I have worked from home for years, but there’s a point where I become bored of talking to myself, and I actually value the ability to speak to another person”.
- Assign each employee a buddy – from a different department that they have to meet with (online) at least once a week. This will help your employees to feel supported, connected and aligned.
- Develop a peer to peer feedback policy – that ensure your employees are receiving feedback from individuals, in an outside of their teams.
Business leaders will need to adopt a flexible working policy during the pandemic.
Over 70% of UK household consists of two working parents, and with schools around the world continuing to close at a rapid pace, parents may be faced with the challenge of working at home, whilst taking care of their children.
It has been proven that organisations who offer flexible working schemes have higher levels of job satisfaction and commitment. Employers who understand and empathize with their employees will be able to come to a flexible policy, which means parents can spend time with children, and complete all of their work.
Here are some tips to help you maintain a flexible but productive remote working policy:
- Set clear goals for each employee, so they are aware of what they need to do, but allow them to complete the work in the hours that work best for them.
- Plan and Schedule your meetings at 48 hours before they are to occur. This will give employees enough time to make childcare arrangement for their children, during the meeting times.
Maintain Transparency and Empower your teams
Over 50% of employees within most organisations believe that their employers are open and honest with them, and as result of this they are less trusting and open with their employers.
Employees believe that if companies are not transparent it is because they are unethical or have something to hide, and if they believe that you are hiding things from them, they may hide things from you. When working from home its more important than ever that everyone within the business is honest.
Keep your employee’s updates on business performance, changes and anything that is happening as a result of the COVID19, and they will be honest with you about their progress, work and any challenges they have.
Support your team, keep them motivated and most importantly be kind
Consider the fact your employee may be scared and low in spirit because of the pandemic. You need to show that you understand them and try to lift their spirits by cracking a joke, sharing a funny story or even giving them a social event to look forward to, once the noise has died down. Your employees may even just need some to help them try and resist the to panic food and drinks.
Invest and Leverage in Tech
Investing in reliable technology can make the world of difference in connecting and aligning teams beyond the office, the right tool will allow businesses to interact with each other as if they were actually sitting next to each other, in an office.
Here at Collude, our platform gives businesses an opportunity to continue to support and align, employees during the pandemic. Sign up here for free.