Within the last 6 months, many companies have been flipped to navigate online work experiences to ensure the safety of their employees. While many people quickly found benefits to working from home, such as having more family time in place of a commute or simply enjoying the new relaxed work dress, people also started to find some downfalls to working from home.
Without face-to-face interaction, it is easy to get into a slump of the tasks that are awaiting your completion instead of keeping a bigger focus of why you chose this career in the first place. Managers, and even co-workers, play a large role in team morale. And while it isn’t necessarily the same or as easy, there are ways they can improve morale virtually and maintain that important team atmosphere no matter where employees may be working.
1. Set Team Goals
Just because the team might not be in the same space doesn’t mean they can’t work together to achieve a common goal. Unfortunately, the impacts of COVID-19 put many companies in a hard place, either just trying to stay afloat or catching up on lost time. But, goals allow team members to feel like they have something to strive for and help focus the team on the positives, amid the hard circumstances.
Goals should be created with the organization and mission statement in mind and have specifics so it is clear when they are reached. They allow people to see how their individual work impacts the greater picture and gives everyone something to celebrate when those goals are achieved.
2. Recognize the Wins
In a period where it feels like one negative after the other, it is vital to put extra emphasis on the positives, even if they feel like small wins. Whether it is celebrating the employees or the work they are doing for the company, appreciate and focus on the people who have stuck through and continued to put in effort for the company.
This Impraise article offers some ideas on how to recognize your employees and also discusses a further benefit of doing so: recognition is important for the employee being noticed, but it also sets an example of the value of hard work to inspire the entire company. So, whether it is in-person or through a video call, publicly spotlight an employee or team for their hard work, privately recognize all the details of success and your appreciation, and give out a few extra raises when they are deserved.
3. Coach the Employees
Instead of constantly just pointing out the mistakes or errors, try coaching employees on how they can improve. Not only will the investment in each individual impact the employees, but it will also help the future of your company.
Workplace Psychology notes a few of the benefits. To your business, you will strengthen the skills of your workforce, boost employee productivity, and retain your staff – resulting in more loyalty and knowledge and less training costs. To the employees, the time dedicated to them and the new skills learned will help them feel valued and encouraged and experience pride in the ability to overcome new challenges.
“Building authentic relationships and collaborating with employees—the essence of coaching—is an investment in the long-term health of your organization.”
4. More Communication
Extra communication in a time of disconnect is vital. Keep your employees updated about both the things that directly affect them and the overall company decisions that might interest them. Corporate culture is built upon trust and communication.
Communication is an important part of OMT-Veyhl’s business model. Internally, efforts are shown in our corporate communication that gives honest updates on sales and products, as well as celebrates company and employee news. Externally to our customers, communication is key to holding true the partnerships that keep parts smoothly meeting expectations with on-time delivery.
5. Encourage a Work-Life Balance
Encourage employees to pursue passions outside of work. While a dedicated employee is crucial, it is important to support a work-life balance. This will prevent burnout and ensure everyone is refreshed and ready to actively engage when they come in each day.
Simply offering more flexible work hours and understanding when something in an employee’s personal life comes up can make an employee feel more valued by their company and, in turn, work more productively when the time comes. While overtime and extra work is inevitable, it’s about finding the balance so both parties can give and take as needed.
Boosting team morale will look different for different companies, especially as society navigates how to virtually connect and work within social distancing measures, but focusing on appreciating your employees and investing in their well-being hasn’t been any more important than it is right now.