05.05.2021 20:59:42

Bitesize – 6 tips to keeping employees engaged during (another) lockdown

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Welcome to Bite Size – our bi-monthly blog where we explore a topic in bite size form – short, sharp and easy to digest

England is now in the middle of Lockdown 2.0. Even though there are positive updates on a possible vaccine, there is no guarantee this will be the last lockdown we will be subjected to over the next few months.

Yet again businesses are having to navigate the challenges lockdown presents with employees either working from home or going into the office sporadically.

Here are 6 tips we would suggest:

  1. Set clear expectations – make it clear when and why employees can work from home or in the office. Also be specific about which calls are essential to attend and be flexible about when you expect them to be working.
  2. Remove frustrations about work processes – by now, you should have streamlined your processes but make sure these are still working efficiently, especially if you had reverted to working from an office when restrictions were lifted. Going back to remote working might present challenges again.
  3. Care for your employees more so than ever – the first lockdown was hard enough but at least the sun shone and there was more daylight. We are now entering the darkest months, with less daylight time to spend outdoors. Don’t underestimate the state of your employees’ mental health. Let team members share tips about how to make their day more enjoyable!
  4. Enable social opportunities – working from home erodes normal bonding opportunities so make sure you get these in the diary. There are lots of different things you can try so branch out and do something a little different. Try sending everyone a cocktail kit and an invitation to a virtual happy hour, book group online games like virtual escape rooms, or how about a cheese and wine evening? At CLP, we organise get-togethers around topics such as Christmas celebration, vacation plans and even video games. 
  5. Emphasise the role each person plays in the company – if your employee feels their work matters and they can see how they contribute you will get a higher rate of engagement. Check in with each team member regularly and let them know they are helping the organisation make it through these challenging times.
  6. Give your employees something to be proud of – reach out to your community and help. Showing how you are supporting charities and those less fortunate, especially at this difficult time, will make employees proud of their company.

There will be some employees that enjoy working from home. They like the work-life balance it gives them. But there will also be other employees who much prefer the routine, sociability, and proximity to work colleagues working in an office provides.

How do you balance the two and keep employees on board and engaged especially as, according to Gartner, employee engagement has a bigger impact on business outcomes during tough times than during good times?

We hope these tips help. At CLP we offer opportunities for leaders to learn how to lead virtually. If you would like to hear more, click here.

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