7 Powerful Insights for Managers During the Coronavirus
Between navigating altered operations and determining how employees can work from home, the coronavirus pandemic is testing managers on how effectively they can work with their employees.
With such brand new circumstances, it’s not surprising that there is an abundance of room to learn and to practice a new, unified narrative.
How can managers continue to achieve company goals when their employees are no longer an office or two over? While it may seem necessary to put stricter guidelines in place, it would be detrimental to do so.
Managers who wish to maintain good relationships with their employees should think carefully about how they manage their team during this time.
How the Coronavirus Has Altered Business as Usual
The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has affected countless businesses around the country. In some circumstances, businesses have had to close their doors and forfeit revenue.
Others, termed essential businesses, have been able to continue working by taking precautions to reduce the number of employees at facilities and by having many employees operate from home.
During this not so ideal situation, business operations have been impacted in a variety of ways, including disrupted supply chains, growing need for stable telecommunications, and reduced consumer spending.
It’s no surprise that those companies which are still operating are doing their best under the circumstances, but feel as though they have been thrown into another dimension.
How can managers create a sense of calm for their employees? What are the most important steps to take to ensure productivity and boost morale?
Here are tips on what to do and what not to do during this unparalleled time.
7 Insights for Managers During the Coronavirus Crisis
1. Trust vs micromanage your team.
The worst thing to do in a time of crisis is to put additional pressure on your team.
Your team members are concerned and look to you for some stability. Your ability to avoid micromanaging will improve morale in and among employees.
Trust your team to deliver the best they can under the circumstances.
2. Your team needs support – not bigger asks.
Employees who are working onsite require support in the form of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), guidance on social distancing, and comfort that a plan is in place in the case that an employee becomes infected.
Support your remote workers with guidelines on how to make their work from home situation more comfortable and productive.
3. Communication is vital.
As a manager, it’s extremely important to communicate calmly and regularly with employees.
Keep everyone informed about the company’s plans throughout the crisis and set routine meetings (virtual or otherwise) to discuss developments and highlight positive progress.
Be a source of information and guide employees. Share the WHO Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Advice for the Public with your team.
4. Adaptability goes a long way.
When leading a team, it’s crucial to be open to innovative ideas, potential avenues, and outside-the-box suggestions. During this pandemic, it’s even more urgent for businesses to practice adapting to new scenarios.
Hear your team out and be flexible as employees adjust and grow into their new, irregular situations.
5. Empathy and kindness are critical.
This pandemic has thrown everyone for a loop. Some are being directly affected by the disease, knowing friends and family members who have been infected. Others are absorbing the emotional strain of a world in pain, and are mentally fatigued.
Be an understanding and empathetic manager. Listen and be proactive about the health and safety of your team members.
6. Incorporate positivity to boost company spirit.
This may seem like a no brainer, but now more than ever, employees need to hear positive words from their company leaders.
Make your team laugh, talk about exciting advancements, describe how the team is growing closer through the challenge of working remotely.
Spend time reflecting positively on your team’s efforts and encourage them to share positive thoughts too.
7. Learn from this experience and prepare for future crises.
While we can’t turn back the clock, we can use this experience to create plans and guidelines for future potential crises.
We can also learn more about employees and how remote work has altered the necessary functions of businesses.
Most importantly, managers and leaders should learn that trusting, supporting, and empathizing with their team is the best method, no matter if employees are working remotely or down the hall.
Your organization can grow from this experience and be triumphant if managers and leaders accept the importance of their roles in forming lasting relationships with employees.
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