The past year and a half have been exhausting, sigh! We are all tired, infuriated and fed up with adjusting to the new normal, and constantly juggling between lockdowns and the new way of life. Being in and out of offices has impacted work, but even more so, employees’ mental wellbeing. The need for maintaining positivity and mental health in organizations is now crucial as ever.
Shifting work remotely had been tough on the employees’ already, WFH was not the easiest to adjust to. Bringing work equipment home, moving the official connections online, and keeping the focus and productivity in check was a task. Cherry on top, employees are now struggling going back to offices physically. Continuous worrying and stressing about their physical health and that of their loved ones back home is taking a toll on employees’ mental health and consequently, negatively impacting the positivity levels in the work environment.
In times like these, organisations, employers and work leaders need to lead with empathy. They should adopt ways and introduce programs to restore the mental wellbeing of workers and overall positivity of the workplace. Being in the business for a while, here are a few ways we have found to be successful in doing so.
Investing in your team culture would be a great idea right now. Bring your teams together, make them more connected thus more productive and happier. As an empathetic leadership, send out motivating video messages for your team, keeping checks on their mental health. Celebrate their work achievements and their cultural festivities. Any minor thing could call for a celebration this year, any reason to be happy and have a light moment.
Moreover, stay in touch with your team. Hear out their concerns and be all ears to the potential solutions they pitch in. Collaborate with them and communicate on a daily basis. Binding the team together, online or on-site, where they find each other as their support system to get through daily work struggles would be a great idea as well.
With all the social distancing and masks, people have grown apart at workplaces. Lack of exposure and human interaction has had an impact on employees’ moods. As an organisation, now is the time to step up and re-establish those lost connections, in order to maintain productivity and positivity.
If your team is still working remotely, create the connections online. Casual hangouts or team-coffee breaks can be hosted on the web, where employees blow off the steam from work and have a relaxed time. A quick catch up on life and just chilling with your teammates can elevate your mood and mental wellbeing. This positive attitude will then be reflected in workers productivity, good on you, as an organisation.
Whether your company is working remotely or physically at offices, this is something doable. Build wellness habits and encourage relaxing activities among your team. In these challenging times, when stress is customary to your employees and often causes suffering to their daily functioning and work operations, you need to introduce these wellness programs to keep their sanity and productivity.
Including stretch breaks during office hours can be an effective wellness habit, helping the employees stay active and alert during the day. These breaks can be as small as 10 minutes, but have a long lasting impact on their mental health.
Moreover, moments of mindfulness throughout the day can be helpful. Having a mindful chat to start the meeting, would count as a wellness habit too. Lighthearted discussions on any pleasant news from the world, a movie or any book review to lighten the work environment, could work.
The mental health of employees affect positivity around the workplace, and both these factors set pace for the work productivity as well. Therefore, it’s high time organisations give due importance to these aspects and work towards improving them.