Many companies know how vulnerable they are to threats and how resilient they are when facing change. Reflections from most business leaders point to employees that supported the organisations at their most vulnerable points, teams that held and supported businesses and individuals that went out of their way.
For most leaders, this was unexpected. It was, however, a turning point for many business leaders and a realisation of the need to support employees and to be honest about what they can and cannot do.
Intentional organisations are genuinely looking at ways to improve employee experiences.
This is manifesting in many ways and this article explores some of the things organisations can do to support their most important resource, namely employees.
According to a Forbes research, employees who feel they belong are 3.5 times more likely to be engaged at work.
Business leaders will need programmes that help especially remote and home-based workers to have a greater sense of belonging.
The fix, however, will not lie in returning to pre-Covid practices. Instead, there will be a heightened focus on how to enhance productivity, collaboration, culture, and innovation to accommodate styles and personalities.
Well-being initiatives will become an essential part of a toolkit — not only for attracting and retaining talent, but also for demonstrating a commitment to employees’ health and safety.
Physical health, mental health, financial well-being, social well-being, and occupational well-being all play an integral part in well-being.
Organisations that support employee well-being will see strong commitment and engagement from their employees.
To a large extent, home working will continue and some companies are adopting hybrid systems of working.
To support collaboration, therefore, organsations will work to cut noise from workdays.
Rather than increasing the tools, processes, and systems to navigate collaboration, the focus will have to be on optimising the employee technology experience by getting the most out of fewer systems and platforms.
The IT department becomes even more critical not only in listening and understanding employee technology needs, but also bridging the gap to overcome technology challenges.
While employee surveys are important, it takes a new level of listening to connect with an employee you can’t physically connect with.
Organisations will have to supplement active listening (that is, asking employees for feedback) with more passive listening (listening to employee voices on internal platforms and/or social media) to get a more holistic view of what is top of mind for employees.
Thereafter, implementing employee experience programmes that address these challenges.
This shifts from a twice-a-year activity to dedicated resources.
However, listening without taking action actually results in worse engagement than if you don’t have a listening programme at all.
Lastly, performance and recognition becomes frequent and customised.
Social recognition is a powerful form of recognition.
Organisations that acknowledge their employees (individually or as a team) on social forums such as LinkedIn connect and become even more relevant.
Business leaders have to consider situational recognition programmesbetween someone who is working entirely from home and one who comes to the office daily.
OUT OF SIGHT
Will ‘out of mind, out of sight’ scenarios affect performance management and how will this be mitigated if it happens? Business leaders have to put guidelines, have them documented and communicated to the employees and their line managers.
Post Covid-19 ways of working will definitely be different but the one thing that remains standard is the need to treat employees better as they are your first line of brand ambassadors and the pillars of organisations.