5 TIPS FOR KEEPING EMPLOYEES ENGAGED
Now is not the time to put internal communications on hold. Even though you may feel overwhelmed with crisis communications related to the Coronavirus outbreak, it’s important to maintain a steady flow of communications to employees on other topics as well.
Whether employees are working from home, or amongst those who must keep coming in despite the virus, we need to provide a sense of connection and belonging. As much as possible, we want to help people feel like it’s business as usual and keep them engaged.
PICK UP THE PACE
With more people working remotely, you need more communications faster. In addition to giving employees timely and frequent updates on the company’s COVID-19 plans and news, keep those regularly scheduled newsletters, intranet articles and other comms coming. You may even want to add something new like an intranet post or email with work-from-home tips to stay productive, healthy and connected.
SHOW THEM THE LEADERS
Keep the executive leadership team visible during this time of
heightened emotions. If you have an upcoming town hall, move
ahead with the meeting as scheduled, asking employees to stream it on their computers or phones. If the CEO and other leaders are not in the office, that’s fine. Let them present from their home offices — that helps demonstrate that we can all keep working regardless of where we are.
MAKE SMEs OF REMOTE WORKERS
If you have employees who always work from home, use them as your subject matter experts for office employees who are adjusting to remote work. For instance, you might have one or more of them host a company webinar on their best advice for how to schedule the day, stay connected with others, find an appropriate backdrop for video calls, handle family interruptions and even enjoy the chance to work in sweatpants.
FEATURE EMPLOYEES WHO CAN’T WORK REMOTELY
This is a great time to make heroes of those people who are doing the work that can’t be done from a home office. Create visibility for employees in data centers, manufacturing facilities, hospitals and call centers with newsletters, internal magazines and intranet posts. Interview them for articles, make sure they’re highlighted in recognition programs and ask them to provide updates on Yammer or any internal social platforms.
PROMOTE YOUR WELLNESS OFFERINGS
We’re all working with a new normal, and that’s a great time
to introduce new habits. If you have a wellness program
like VirginPulse or another online platform, promote it now
for employees who haven’t taken advantage of it before.
Employees may be newly interested in apps that help them
practice meditation or yoga. It might even be a good time for a
step competition to give employees a reason to get up and do some walking.