The Coronavirus spread has caught all of us by surprise. We were not ready to change our habits and daily routines: working from home, social distancing, hyper-connectivity, and teleconferencing were all concepts we knew the meaning of, but we definitely were not expecting to have to implement those in our lives in such a sudden and consistent way.
It’s been the speed of this change that, like an earthquake, altered the landscape which surrounds us. And now that we’re all entering this New Normal Era, in which many of the dynamics we’ve built our lives around are changing, uncertainty is a concept we’ll have to deal with more than ever.
And we know it, it’s a scary one: while some people seem to enjoy taking risks and living excitingly unpredictable lives, many others find the randomness of life deeply distressing. And these days, the lack of certainties in regards to the economy, employment, finances, and relationships can really take an emotional toll.
For example, we’ve recently found that, according to a recent survey published by the Kaiser Family Foundation, nearly half of the people living in the United States feel the coronavirus crisis is harming their mental health. And along with this, comes burnout. Blind has recently reported that 73% of working professionals are burned out, an 12% increase over the 61% reported in February 2020.
Mental fears such as the above are pretty serious issues that put companies in a position for which they need to find a way to protect the most valuable assets of them all: their employees’ wellbeing.
Empowering the workforce with the right tools, creating a supportive environment for workforces in which they feel comfortable returning to work, will ultimately encourage them to face many of these unknown dynamics with more confidence.
But what exactly should companies focus on to achieve all of this?
Let’s analyze three key action points:
Rely on Credible Information
For a large amount of time, especially when the whole Covid-19 narrative wasn’t really clear, we’ve all been exposed to non-reliable news in regards to how to deal with the virus and its effects.
Now, as experts uncover more information about COVID-19, facts will eventually reign supreme over fears – but misinformation is still something we should all take into account. And eradicate.
After a psychologically and financially tough lockdown, companies can’t afford to have employees scared of malicious news: keeping them informed and protected during the transition to the New Normal is vital.
Sharing corporate news and return-to-work policies on an internal comms platform will help reduce worker anxiety and foster a smooth transition to the workplace, whilst further centering your brand as a reliable destination of community information and truths.
Educate Managers & Employees
Did you know that 75.6% of people in the US are still uncertain about what actions they should take in response to the coronavirus? This may sound silly, but it’s exactly what we’re dealing with right now: too many dynamics around us are still uncertain!
Companies, though, have a weapon to use these days: Education initiatives, designed specifically to help mitigate worker anxiety.
These can include updated employee handbooks or special additions that cover all workplace safety, sanitization, and implementation protocols; mental health resources & financial assistance and planning resources, and corporate content to help employees safely navigate a post-pandemic world.
Knowing that companies have set up an environment in which these education initiatives are implemented will help employees alleviate stress more easily.
Small Gestures For Others And Yourself
Often, during emergencies and crises, people start performing acts of kindness at random. Contributing, giving, volunteering, donating, and performing kind acts connect you to other people in a deeply meaningful way.
Companies with healthy cultures are probably familiar with the above, having created over the years an environment in which helping others is more important than focusing just on yourself, but in this New Normal Era, an inclusive culture looks even more vital for employees’ wellbeing.
After all, this is a moment in time where employees can’t be together (often or at all), and the stress generated by detachment can be tackled in a simple but yet very important way: creating safe, virtual rooms.
Uncertainty is better dealt with if negative thoughts can be shared, and having companies create safe spaces for their employees will ultimately improve their workforce wellbeing over the long run.
Discover How Beem Helps Global Employees Communicate & Feel Safe
Anxiety is detrimental to business productivity, and COVID-19 has made workers more anxious than ever. Their fears are valid, so companies must take measures to reduce employee anxiety if they are to foster positive, productive, and profitable working environments. Forward-thinking businesses that establish programs and policies designed to mitigate worker anxiety are well-positioned to meet the challenges of a returning workforce.
In doing so, they stand a greater chance of emerging from the pandemic with loyal employees who are eager to help their companies continue their successes!