Distance Doesn’t Mean Disconnected

No doubt about it ... we are navigating a new business terrain.

Because of COVID-19 aka Corona Virus, a large number of businesses are now forced to have employees work from home. This can be off-putting on all sides. So how do we make the best of it?

With a bit of forethought, innovation, and ingenuity, customers can still be served at the best and highest levels and employees can develop a greater sense of contributing to the good of the company's mission.  This can be accomplished by those in leadership being sensitive and accomodating to the team as they adjust to working from home.

For those never having had the opportunity to commute "just down the hall to the living room, den, or kitchen nook, or even across the room to the computer corner", there are tremendous distractions to overcome ... so be sensitive during the transition.  No longer being able to chat up a colleague in the break room or peek over the shoulder of a coworker can be daunting; coupled with their children being home (due to school closures), it's really a lot. So here are some suggestions to consider:

  • Inject a bit of fun into the morning check-in meetings by asking everyone to show up in their pajamas with their biggest coffee mug or coolest smoothie cup;
  • Discuss how they might design their most conducive work-from-home environment.
  • If feasible, be more flexible with their schedules, as some people are more productive in the morning/evening and others are motivated by taking small breaks throughout the day or a longer lunch, which helps them manage the kiddos.
  • Since more people are home and on the internet, their speeds may be slower as surges happen. If there's room in the company budget, offer to cover the cost of them upgrading their internet plans to mitigate them having spotty/troublesome connections.
  • Use online team tools like Trello, Slack, Asana, Dapulse, Flowdock, Zoom, etc. (Please note that these are a few of many available tools and not an endorsement of any.)
  • Share practical productivity tips, e.g., those who are subject to a noisy home environment can get noise-canceling headphones while others may need a new laptop, wireless keyboard, or second screen.

Above all, remain sensitive, available and accomodating ... and watch your staff become more cohesive, productive, and self-assured. The benefits of staying connected will spill over onto your customers, which is the ultimate success. Good luck!

For more ideas to consider, schedule a call: bit.ly/speakwithmarcia


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