As the Coronavirus pandemic continues to rise worldwide stress, anxiety and uncertainty has become rife around the globe. Businesses are now having to implement emergency measures within their workplaces to keep their staff and the public safe. This has meant a huge number of workers are now having to work from home. This brings vast issues and concerns for employees and employers alike.
Most workers spend a third of their time working and now more so than ever, employers have a responsibility to look after their staff’s wellbeing and mental health whilst they are working in differing environments that may be isolating and daunting. A huge amount of businesses and workers will feel the effects of the current crisis in some way. The financial impact is colossal at every level leaving uncertainty and worry about everyone’s financial stability and employment status. This increase in workers stress and anxiety will also have a large cost to businesses from sick days to lost productivity. Employers therefore cannot ignore the impact that these changes will have on their workers and their businesses. As an employer what can you do?
First and foremost, your team’s health must be top priority! It is so important to make decisions and implement measures with the well-being of your staff in mind. During these uncertain times it’s helps for everyone employed to remember that they’re not alone in how they feel. Therefore, managers are key in helping to support staff in a compassionate way and offering flexible hours whilst working from home will be a must.
Ways to practice Compassion as an employer Look: Take time to contact your staff regularly. How do people's energy levels seem? Are people keeping their appearances tidy as they would whilst at work
Listen: Practice listening. Give your team space to be open and honest about how they feel, both mentally and physically.
Feel: Everyone is going to be feeling a range of different emotions. Taking the time to acknowledge how your team is feeling.
Respond: In times of high stress, it's easy to let fears get in the way of communication. Stop and give yourself space to respond in a professional but kind way.
I highly recommend employers to prioritise staff’s safety, mental health and wellbeing. It’s vital that employers do all they can to create good conditions for staff to feel supported and safe. The need for consistent, regular, communication is crucial. Employees may start to feel isolated so employers need to start thinking of ways we can create a virtual sense of community and support.
Mindfulness practice in the workplace Mindfulness can help resilience and the ability to deal with difficult situations which is crucial to your staff’s well-being. By teaching mindfulness at work, it will give employees the ability to understand their emotions and their level of stress. By doing this staff are far more likely to be happier and therefore more efficient and productive.
Mindfulness is also directly linked to motivation within the workplace and whilst staff are working from their homes this has become more apparent. This will enable workers to stay focused yet flexible and is a way of reprogramming the mind to think in a healthier, less stressful way. Want to increase the wellbeing and overall productivity of your team? - Get in touch today!
By Yvonne Cookson