In 2020, an asteroid – in the form of the COVID-19 pandemic – collided with the earth, sending life as everybody knew it into a freefall.
Employees in your organization are feeling the brunt of the pandemic as much as anyone else. They’re worried about their families, their own health, and their job security. Plus, your talent is dealing with the negative aspects of social isolation. These issues can contribute to insomnia, an over-reliance on alcohol, unhealthy eating habits, and other wellness-damaging activities. That’s on top of the depression and anxiety everybody’s dealing with.
You’re a leader – not only in your industry – but in your community.
Thus, you must be part of the healing process. Make this happen by contributing to your employees’ overall well-being during the most challenging period in recent history.
Employee Productivity on the Decline
Catastrophic scenarios such as the September 11th terrorist attacks and the 2008 Great Recession undoubtedly shook society to its very core. Studies indicate that 69% of professionals claim the COVID-19 era to be more stressful than the previously mentioned significant events.
As a result, 70% of workers haven’t been nearly as productive. This is due to the anxiety and stress caused by the pandemic.
None of this should be surprising. Very few organizations have escaped the pitfalls of complete business model shifts, layoffs, and budget cuts if they were lucky enough to avoid full closure. Combine that with the ongoing global strife, and it’s a horrific set of circumstances for your team.
Heading into 2021, the new normal is taking an even more permanent shape. You must adjust your philosophy to meet current demands to retain your top talent and keep them engaged.
Mental Health Should Be Your First Priority
Even before the pandemic, mental health has taken precedent in the social consciousness.
Too many employers claim they prioritize employee mental health without putting in the time to establish approaches that enhance it.
Here are a few examples that characterize this philosophy:
- Encourage employees to schedule time off.
- Make it known that ‘mental health’ days are available.
- Ensure that work schedules are more flexible.
- Investigate whether it’s possible to expand your healthcare benefits program.
- Promote work-life balance by insisting employees don’t look at their email inboxes after hours.
Top talent wants to work for organizations with compassionate and empathetic leaders who support them through tough times. Your team will feel a sense of loyalty and commitment due to your understanding and focus on wellbeing.
Be Transparent with Your Team
Just because you’re using virtual platforms or the telephone to communicate doesn’t mean you should emotionally disconnect from your team. In fact, a video chat is much simpler than a trip to someone’s office or cubicle.
Regardless of the platform, your discussions should be open and transparent about everybody’s mindset and the company’s status. Your honesty about where business stands will encourage your team to be honest with you. Once the staff is upfront about how they feel, it gives you a chance to step in and help.
Not everybody has an easy time being that open during conversations. Consider getting employees to fill out confidential feedback surveys to get valuable information about their well-being.
Employees will appreciate that you value their input, and you can create processes that keep them fulfilled with your company.
Keep Everything Positive
Right now, more than ever, people require encouragement.
Your team is filled with high performers, and sometimes they need to be reminded of their abilities. Even the most productive employees hit walls – now, more than ever – and require a nudge forward. Seek out ways to give struggling talent a win and show them gratitude. From there, they’ll re-engage in their work and feel a sense of loyalty to you for lifting them up.
Employee Retention Helps Your Bottom Line
When you aren’t there for your team, they won’t be there for you when you need them most. You don’t have the time or budget to train a revolving door of employees.
2021 will prove to be as tough on your team as 2020 (if not tougher). Stand tall for your people now, and they’ll be helping your business thrive for generations to come.
Good recruiting takes more than reading a resume or job description. AT ITAC, we make it our mission to understand and reveal the deeper, more important information. For our candidates, we put in the time to help you find not just the job you can do, but the job you can love. For our clients, we make sure you find you the professionals who don’t just meet your technical expectations, but also align with your company’s unique culture and set of values. To get started with ITAC, call us today.