People need something to hold on to while all around them seems in constant change. In our workplaces, this means a sense of direction, understanding and reassurance. They’ll be looking to the leadership team to give them (a) plan (b) empathy and (c) hope.
For leaders, it’s time to step up to the plate and keep all connected and informed, communicating more regularly, clearly and authentically than they may have done before. While leaders set the tone, it’s vital that line managers follow this through by being particularly understanding and sensitive to those around them.
On-boarding will need to change too. Faced with inducting new recruits into what, for many, will be a virtual business, organisations must quickly adapt their onboarding process to make them feel welcome and inspired from day one. In fact I’d go a step further and say that the shape and ‘feel’ of our organisations is changing so much that everyone will require re-boarding into the new cultures that are emerging.
It’s worth remembering too that there is no ‘one size fits all’ approach – your people are all different and the success of how you manage and inspire them depends on how well you know who you are managing. You can help by simply asking how they are. A little empathy is likely to go a long way. This year, in our ever changing world, your people just want to know that you care. Let them know – and they’ll take care of the rest.
This blog is a part of the IW Official Guide: World Mental Health Day Supporting the workplace during the pandemic & beyond. Download the full guide here.