The holidays have come and gone. Excitement for the new year is fading. The dark, cold days of winter are upon us. For many, this time of year can have a negative effect mentally and emotionally, but with seemingly no end in sight to the pandemic and the subsequent restrictions and chaos of daily life can make this a particularly challenging time for your employees.
While it offers a lot of perks, working from home can bring added stress and burnout along with a decrease in socialization that comes from the office – no more chats by the water cooler or birthday celebrations in the breakroom. Gone are the casual conversations and camaraderie waiting for a meeting to begin. It’s one virtual meeting after another.
With the increased competition for talent, companies are now left with no choice but to make sure their employees are happy. Even without turnover, happy employees are simply good business sense.
According to SnackNation, companies with happy employees outperform the competition by 20%.
So how can you keep employees happy and boost morale this winter?
- Encourage your Employees to Unplug.
- Studies show that employees are feeling more overworked than ever before due to the lack of boundaries in a remote environment. According to an article from SHRM, “Nearly three-quarters say they feel obligated to immediately return emails and take work calls, and 69% say they have had a boss who regularly expects them to respond outside of workday hours. Doing so may have the opposite effect of what managers want, as three-quarters of respondents say consistently being expected to work after hours makes them less productive.”
- Managers should make it clear that employees are not expected to be available 24/7. Establishing a culture that values personal time will help employees to have a better mindset and feel more in control of their schedules.
- Foster Open Communication.
- Scheduling regular 1:1 meetings with employees, and taking the time to check in with employees can facilitate trust and strong communication.
- According to Gallup, employees whose managers hold regular meetings with them are almost 3 times as likely to be engaged as employees whose managers do not hold regular meetings with them.
- Create Opportunities for Advancement and Professional Development.
- The pandemic has canceled many conferences and events, eliminating traditional opportunities for professional development and growth. However, organizations have adapted and there are lots of virtual options. Don’t assume employees know there are options for them.
- Maria Kraimer, a business professor at the University of Iowa, shared with BusinessNewsDaily, "We found that providing developmental support, such as training opportunities and career mentoring, to employees who do not believe there are attractive career opportunities for them within the company led to such employees leaving the organization. It's critical for businesses to have regular career planning discussions with their employees. As part of training and development, make sure employees are aware of the different types of career paths or job opportunities throughout the company."
It is easy to fall into a daily routine of day-to-day tasks and meetings, but managers who are intentional about engaging with their employees will see increased production and reduced turnover.
Contact us today to learn more about our modern approach to performance management and development that actually improves the manager and employee relationship. Don’t just take our word for it, see what our Customers have to say.