Covid-19 has affected the way that most of us work on a daily basis, with many people working from home for the first time in their lives. This change in working habits can be quite difficult to adapt to and whilst working remotely is better for some, it may be difficult for others.
Below we have covered some areas that could be explored by organisations to ensure that employees are feeling their best and maintaining productivity whilst working from home.
While employees are working from home, communication is more important than ever. It can be easy to get into the habit of sending emails or instant messages whenever something needs doing but it is important to be more personal – try calling instead of messaging or utilise video calls.
We also recommend hosting daily catch up calls with teams, this offers everyone the chance to talk as a group and raise any issues such as workload, important deadlines or any other important information that needs to be shared with the team. These daily calls provide important ‘face time’ and can be a great opportunity to inject some fun into the day. You could try doing daily facts, mini games or news overviews to set people off on a positive start to their day.
One-to-One check ins
Alongside group calls, we recommend individually checking in with employees. It can be easy for some employees to remain quiet in group calls, one-to-one check-ins are a good way to see if there are any issues but should also be used to check in on a more personal level, are they coping ok, do they have any questions or concerns. This should be a friendly chat with less pressure than being in a larger group.
Everyone works differently in different environments and some may find working from home more difficult than others, it’s important to provide a safe space to talk about how they are feeling and provide some support where needed. This one-to-one regular communication will go further than you think in making someone feel happier at work!
Ensuring a work-life balance
When working from home it can be harder to switch off and many people struggle with knowing when to stop. We recommend making sure that employees are taking their allocated breaks where possible and finishing work at their usual hours.
Taking proper breaks and finishing work at set times will work wonders for productivity by preventing burnout and giving employees down time.
Have fun too!
During lockdown many people’s social lives have changed drastically, when not coming into the office there is less social time within the teams. To focus on maintaining a strong company culture and to boost wellbeing we recommend setting a ‘social’ event weekly or biweekly. This will provide employees with something to look forward to and time to wind down from work with colleagues.
Some ideas of things you could do would be to host weekly quiz nights or team drinks on video calling platforms. You could create a separate chat to share things that aren’t work related, for example, delicious new recipes, a book that you just couldn’t put down or a workout routine that you really enjoyed, this can inspire colleagues with things to do outside of working hours and be a good place for people to have casual chats, the sort of things you would usually chat about when making a cuppa in the kitchen.
Alongside these activities, there are online services that you can access and share with employees to enrich their days. For example, the OneWellness Online Community gives you access to a range of information and advice from personal trainers and health coaches. There is also a huge range of material online such as yoga classes and mindfulness guides to keep people feeling healthy and happy during lockdown. Take a look at our mindfulness blog for more information on this topic.