Employee Engagement During Global Pandemic

Coronavirus pandemic has bought the world down to its knees. No matter how small or how big is your business, whether it’s a shop, restaurant, start-up or even a well-settled company. Every business owner has been facing a crunch in the workforce. Employees are falling sick every day and employers have no choice but to let them stay back home so that they can recover. At times like these, companies that offer employee health insurance, it is even easier for them to go through this pandemic than the ones that don’t.

Despite the negative effects of Covid-19, change is their ways of working, business model and regulations, there is one thing that everybody would agree upon- we have learned a lot. Local business owners have to shut down their shops and many have to manage their employees remotely. Yet, this scenario has bought some valuable lessons that would boost up the business in the coming days (New Normal) as we call it.

Talking about employee engagement, it refers to the commitment of an employee towards the company/organization as well as its goal and vision. Employee engagement is not about their satisfaction at their workplace or salaries. Usually, companies make the mistake of treating employee engagement as an HR issue when it is related to business and workplace attitude. So how can you improve employee engagement while going through this pandemic?

Support Employees

When the pandemic started, the government ordered a lockdown. This led the employers to ask their employees to start working from home. The senior management of the organization who haven’t managed remote working before had to find a way to manage their teams and their performance while working from home. They started using some common methods like one on one check-ins and daily meetings when they could discuss their daily workforce. These frequent meetings led them to a micro-goal setting and helped the employees in getting frequent feedbacks that helped them in their work.

This is how the senior management assessed and measured the progress as well as boost up their team’s productivity which in return kept their employees engaged. It led them to have a sense of purpose as well as achieve their daily goals. It filled up the communication gap between their team and managers. When the communication gap filled up, they started talking about the problems they had to face while working from home and allowed them to easily anticipate or resolve them. Also, if the organization supports their employees at the time of medical emergencies by providing employees health insurance. This kind of approach from the top management has proven to be beneficial to all.

Praise Employees Efforts

When working in a big organization, managers usually forget to praise their team members for their hard work. Their mere focus on the completion of projects leads their team members to lose a bit of confidence. As mentioned above, constant touch with the employee and praise their work on a daily basis motivates them to work harder for the company’s goals. It is important to engage your employee with a culture of recognition. According to research, the team with high performance has a praise to criticism ratio of 5:1. This means that their employees get 5 times more positive feedback than criticism. When you praise your employee, it keeps them motivated and when they get this feeling of being trusted by their manager makes them more energetic and reliable. So, it is important to keep praising your employees for better results.

Create Positive Work Environment

As they say, change is the only constant but adapting to this change is not that easy. When people started going from the office working environment where everyone stays in work mode to their homes. It became very difficult for the employees because of change in the working environment where you are working alone, young children running around, parents to care for or even pets making noise, all of it plays a huge role in ruining the workflow.

This made the managers realize that there are no-work related factors that are affecting the employee’s mindset and engagement. Although, dedicated employees proved their work-life balance and their ability to manage their work as well as their personal needs. In this kind of scenario, it becomes necessary for the managers to maintain a positive working environment when the employees return back to the office. They will have to make sure that the working environment is fit for their employee and not the other way around. It is also essential for the management to look over the factors that would impact the employee outside of work. When employees feel that their personal needs like any medical emergency that come up and the organization have provided their employee with employee health insurance that could provide them financial aid, the employee’s emotional connection with the organization strengthens and they focus on their work even more.

Transparency & Trust in Leadership

When the pandemic started and the majority of employees were sent to work from their homes, they had to trust their leaders to make the right decisions for them and lead them on the right path. Transparency plays a huge role where employees are aware of the happening within their organization. This is separately important during the work from home situation, where their employers should be reliable to take important decisions for the future of the company as well as their employment. Employee health insurance policy also plays a huge role in building trust and encouraging employee engagement. So, to tackle this situation, communication between employees and employers is necessary so that they can discuss and plan out achieving their goals together.

Conclusion

To inspire and lead the employees in the right direction and maintain employee engagement, it is recommended to have frequent meetings and have a transparent conversation between higher management and employees so that employees feel included and be aware of whatever is going in the organization. Also, the employees need to be aware of their self-growing opportunities. Senior management who invest in their employees learning new things encourages employee engagement in a way. Creating a constant feedback loop also helps in creating a growing environment that is built with trust and transparency. These practices will power up employee engagement and help the company grow and retain their employee for longer period of time.

Written By: PolicyBazaar - Updated: 10 May 2021