It seems not that long ago since I posted on LinkedIn how we should all be taking our “wholeself” into work, but who could have imagined such an unprecedented turn of events at a global scale. I invite you to answer these three questions.
As the guidance of “working from home” is put into practice businesses will naturally experience a period of adjustment which will manifest itself both in logistics and in trust. The logistics however challenging, for those new to the game of remote working, will likely be resolved under the more familiar efforts of business continuity. The issue of trust however is rather more interesting as it tests the sometimes polarised views between leadership and workforce. Note to self should be that an opportunity presents itself here and now to close this gap and forge a stronger unity in order to endure through these turbulent times. Both leaders and employees will undoubtedly feel the added strain.
Which brings us to the first question of how all these associated changes will impact on peoples’ wellbeing, leaders and employees alike. What can we learn from places like China or elsewhere where reportedly the side effects of isolation are beginning to show signs of mental ill-health? Wellbeing will need to be addressed as anxiety, stress and depression may promulgate even further. Productivity will inevitably also be subject to the stress test. Initially, a proportion of employees will welcome with a smile the work-life balance afforded in some measure by discounting those dead hours from their daily commute, and possibly even by the prospect of a less complicated lunchtime jog or walk. In contrast, many others will experience a negative and unfamiliar response as the duration of working from home is potentially prolonged beyond just a few weeks.
On the more optimistic side, humans are incredibly resilient and given our compassion and humanity, we are certainly capable of adapting. Supporting employees remotely is a challenge but it’s possible since we have the tools. The question is do we have the clarity of purpose?
By no coincidence our strap line is “People First” so inevitably I’m really interested to learn how everyone is stepping up their game on communication, behaviours and paying added attention to their humanity. As part of this third and last question, what is your business prepared to implement to address these issues, or is some free guidance needed?
The importance of human contact is unquestionable, and although we too have had to shift from working at our clients’ business premises to remote practices, we are most definitely still here to help you feel and perform better.