Companies need to incorporate basic motivational techniques such as being unfailingly polite because if they are verbally wounded, motivational techniques won’t work.
The world is witnessing a time of tremendous change. With its far-reaching consequences, coronavirus has bought life to a standstill. As most of the organisations are striving to continue business as usual while working from home, the new work lifestyle is leading to an employee disconnect. The challenge is for managers to ensure their team members stay engaged, motivated, and productive and don’t feel disconnected.
With work from home being the new normal, anxieties are riding high among employees. Organisations are learning that virtual management techniques are way different from the ones followed in usual office. The unprecedented change in work lifestyle is affecting different people in different ways. While the extrovert employees are grappling in sudden isolation, those who fear changes are struggling to adjust to the new routine and at the same time are productive.
Though everyone’s dream to work in PJs has finally come true, the unprecedented transformation has made us realise that work-from-home works best when it’s by choice and not every day.
Early move by many companies
In a move to curb the cascading effects of the global pandemic and ensure safety of its employees, many organisations like Google, Amazon, Facebook, Vuram Technology Solutions switched to work from home much before the lockdown was announced. Additionally, many companies across various sectors also cancelled its national and international events and conferences before any official notice of event cancellation.
Motivation techniques are important
How shall companies make sure employees are engaged and motivated even when they are away from their traditional work environment? Companies need to incorporate basic motivational techniques such as being unfailingly polite because if they are verbally wounded, motivational techniques won’t work.
1. Ensuring infrastructure compatibility
Many companies are already technology equipped and those who were not, are increasingly adopting technologies and measures to ensure that employees remain productive while working from home and don’t feel isolated. They are ensuring that data is properly maintained on cloud and g-suite to not let current situation hamper the business as usual.
As infrastructure compatibility at home remains the biggest problem for many, also adding additional cost for those who do not have a good broadband connection at home, many companies are reimbursing its employees for initial infrastructure set up and data costs.
2. Work relationships are important
One of the downsides of work from home is that it can be more difficult for employees to connect with their co-workers. To keep the workflows moving, organisations should invest in digital or video conferencing tools. Amidst the current crisis, it is important that the managers display trust in their team and regularly conduct sessions on how to stay productive, encourage interaction and seek feedback.
3. Employee recognition
Appreciation and celebration in the workplace are quintessential because when you acknowledge your employees for their good work on time, they feel rejoiced, and when you celebrate their special occasion as a team, it enhances engagement and connection. HR executives can take help of digital tools and platforms to praise employees on the go. Peer recognition or horizontal recognition is equally important. The current situation where the entire world lies crippled with self isolation, it is needed to fuel zeal in employees to do better.
4. Informal use of digital tools
Virtual team activities like online multiplayer games, quizzes are also great ideas. Employees can even be encouraged to learn new things during their quarantine days and share them with their colleagues. A virtual coffee break where employees connect virtually over video calls to socialize can also be persuaded. These initiatives are effective in preventing potential burnout.
5. Regular health updates and assistance
Organisations must keep checking employees about what they are going through, feeling and thinking or what motivates them. Digital tools can play a major role here as well. Through a digital platform, employees can update their daily health conditions to seek help of the organisation, if anything goes wrong. Such information should be confidential and accessible only by the HR manager.
Summing it all up
When we are required to start something away from our regular routine, we are bound to feel little lost and demotivated and so is the case with employees who are working away from their regular workplace environment. Digital tools can be used to constantly share organisation updates and conduct all hands meetings.
When remote work is the only option, technology becomes imperative to staying connected, efficient, and productive. If employees aren’t informed and don’t understand what is going on inside the company, communications outside of the organization will be more difficult. At Vuram, we are happy to incorporate all the above discussed ways and means to motivate employees as well as maintain their productivity at the same time.
– Written by Suresh Kumar C, Director, People Team, Vuram. Featured story on India Today.