COVID-19 GUIDE FOR HR LEADERS
In this crisis period, we can examine the potential difficulties that employees will encounter in three main branches.
1) Problem of protecting mental health
• While the spread of the virus causes anxiety, fear, and fatigue in employees who continue to go to work, anxiety about job performance is expected to increase.
• For those who continue to work from home, there is an increased possibility to experience burnout as there is no clear separation of home and work life.
2) Daily struggle / logistic obstacles
• Childcare may not be easily accessible for everyone, and the fact that children are at home indefinitely can affect parents' productivity.
• Spending time at home and restricting movement makes daily physical exercise routine, sleep patterns, and healthy eating difficult.
3) Lack of a sense of community
• With the increase of physical isolation, both professional and personal interactions are restricted. This causes family, friendship, and community ties to weaken compared to the past.
Employees will need support to keep morale high.
Steps that can be taken are as follows:
Anxiety and fear management
• Small group or one-on-one meetings can be organized by supervisors to better understand the challenges facing the team. Through these meetings, you can support the individual needs of the employees and show that you care about them.
•Send solidarity emails from leaders to employees that explain what has changed, and also talks about things that challenge and disturb them personally.
• Encourage your employees to address their concerns for older and vulnerable family members and try to provide the support they need to deal with those. Try to come up with creative ideas that will help employees meet their basic needs, such as kitchen shopping, house cleaning, toilet paper, and even postponing doctor appointments.
• Pay great attention to your communication about your employees' work and health status during this period.
Çalışma alanı ve zaman kısıtlamalarından doğabilecek “burnout” yani tükenme hissini engelleme
Preventing the feeling of burnout that can arise from working space and time constraint
You can talk about your expectations and in-team norms in a team meeting that will be held over the virtual environment. Anyone can share break times according to their work order and at what hours they can be reached and at what hours.
- You can organize a team meeting over a virtual environment to talk about expectations and in-team norms. Everyone can share the times they will be available and unavailable for contact.
- Daha uzun süreli toplantı ve workshoplar sırasında mutlaka güçlü bir vizyona sahip olun ve geleceğe dönük hedeflerinizden bahsedin. Toplantı sırasında veya toplantı sonunda çalışanların endişe ve soruları için zaman ayırın. • For longer meetings and workshop make sure to have a strong vision and talk about your future goals. Make time for employees' concerns and questions during or after the meeting
- Do not hesitate to touch on the facts of the new world at the beginning of the meeting.
- Prepare a post on the sustainability of long-term work from home and share it with your employees:
How should we differentiate between work and life and how we should set boundaries;
- How to deal with anxiety and fear during the crisis;
- Remote work levels and different working styles
- You can organize 5-minute awareness and meditation sessions for your team through Zoom / VC video speech platforms using apps like Headspace
- You can ask employees to fill in suggestions and opinions feedback form for better work. Being anonymous can help people share their ideas more comfortably. You can use anonymous feedback platforms such as www.ideaboardz.com for this.
- Recognize that working from home can pose productivity challenges for employees with small children. This also applies to those who receive assistance for childcare at home.
- You can try setting the interviews early before the children wake up.
- Make it clear that unexpected guests - children and pets - who will occasionally attend meetings are acceptable. Accept that it is inevitable to hear “Frozen” songs from time to time in the background…
- Understand that your teammate might be away for 1-2 hours when their partner needs to work
Exercise: set up group exercise classes through a virtual environment.
Sleep: provide access to tools such as sedative apps and sleep training for a regular sleep routine.
Nutrition: Support access to tools and resources to assist nutritional management.
- Organize "happy hour" in a virtual environment - everyone gets a drink and informs each other.
- Organize team lunches and dinners in a virtual environment — everyone brings their meal and you can eat and chat together.
- Introduce your family members and pets to your colleagues.
- You can share using Google Hangouts and reduce your stress a little.
- You can organize contests such as whose background will be more fun during the video call. You can use Zoom for this.
- You can play mutual video games.
- You can organize an art gallery from the pictures and paintings done by the children of your teammates.
Compiled by: Efe Daşman