To keep your employees calm on the job, feeling secure in their work, and not only staying with your company but producing at the highest productivity levels currently possible, we recommend five measures that will also ensure employee retention:
1. Maintain Business As Usual
Yes, we know the world is anything but usual right now. This is exactly why your employees need to feel like at least some things will stay the same – such as their jobs.
Keep up your regular meetings with team members (at a distance now, if they’re not normally). Keep filling the pipelines with plans, and make sure you and your team are still focusing on their long-term personal development. Ongoing training is now even more important, to give your team a sense of direction and, at the very least, distract them from potential catastrophic thinking. We will come out of this, and keeping your team focused on what lies beyond the social-distancing finishing line – however far ahead that seems – is the key to ensuring you all make it across that line together.
Online training and e-learning are obviously the order of the day. Luckily, these already abound, with many existing online training now extending their capabilities as other more traditionally in-person development programs find their ways online. (Unsure of where to begin? Ask us
2. Address Uncertainties
It’s normal to feel uneasy in these times. Sooth your team members by reassuring them that their fears are normal, that they are being heard. Schedule in time to talk to each of your team members individually about their worries, and call on the help of your HR department and other relevant professionals to let them vent their fears and frustrations. (This might be the time to hire in an expert to help you do this.) The important thing is that your staff feels heard.
3. Be Flexible
Your co-workers are likely dealing with unusual situations working from home: the need to home-school, children going stir crazy, potential illness, or caring for sick loved ones.
Remember: you probably hired your team because you trusted in their responsibility and ability to work independently. That trust is especially important now. A little human understanding in the short-term now will go a long way in ensuring long-term loyalty and productivity.
Trust that, if someone needs to take a little extra time now to take care of things at home, they will make it up to you. The more understanding you are about their situation, the more likely they are to want to repay that understanding with extra productivity. Work with your team to find a schedule that works for you both.
4. Encourage Engagement
When employees don’t feel engaged is when the job search usually begins. One study
showed that 56% of employees who don’t feel sufficiently engaged will look for another job, and 73% of actively disengaged employees will want to leave your company.
Even when working remotely and having no real face-to-face interaction, you need to have procedures in place to keep the level of engagement high. Have regular virtual meetings, and not only business meetings.
The training I talked about above is also a remedy here. Employees who are engaged in learning also feel more engaged
in your company. Offer a professional growth plan, have interactive group workshops and individual coaching sessions. Keep them updated about the next steps you are taking with the company and the team. Pay attention to what they are saying. All the points discussed above are relevant here.
And remember to have some fun, too. Employees who feel socially connected to their team are more likely to stay connected to the company as a whole.