One of the most challenging roles of a manager, no matter how experienced they are, is effectively resolving employee conflict. Here are our tips.
5 Ways to Improve Employee Communication During COVID-19
While many employees are working remotely, it's critical to ensure your internal communication practices are organized, consistent, and effective.
As the COVID-19 crisis continues, effective employee communication is crucial to the continuity of business operations. Irregular work routines and remote work arrangements create gaps in the traditional flows.
Here are five ways to build on and improve your company-wide communications.
1. Create a dedicated COVID-19 response team
If you haven’t already done so, consider forming a dedicated response team to disseminate information about the company’s current status (open/close hours, adaptations implemented to minimize virus spread, worker expectations, etc.) and other work-related decisions. The work team could also be responsible for any coordination needs among the various departments within your business. This will reduce the risk of misinformation and prevent a lot of frustration and uncertainty.
2. Establish a steady rhythm of communication
With the highly irregular workflow and slowdowns/disruptions to the supply chain, work schedules may be difficult to predict very far in advance. Set a specific schedule for regular staff/department meetings to communicate updates and ensure all employees are on the same page.
3. Enable employees to receive communication
Managers should discuss with workers their preferred or streamlined methods of communication. You may need to take a multi-channel approach using phone, email, instant messaging, video chat, or other communication avenues necessary to maximize the impact of your communication. This will ensure that no matter where your employees are or what their situation is, they will be updated.
4. Create a central hub for COVID-19 information
As we wait for a vaccination, there are several things you can implement to slow the spread of COVID-19 in your workplace: frequent hand washing, alcohol-based hand sanitizers, routine cleaning, social distancing, wearing face masks when within 6 feet of others, and other workplace controls. Some areas throughout the country may even have regulations mandating these workplace controls!
While these steps can only be effective if properly communicated, consider creating a central hub for COVID-19 information where you can release national and local updates. Post how required adaptations will be implemented at your workplace. There are multiple file-sharing features of workplace collaboration tools to easily disseminate this information.
5. Allay employee anxieties and fears
It’s understandable that some of your employees will experience unusual fears and anxieties during this time of uncertainty. After all, the reality of the situation -- the likelihood of cash flow issues and late payments -- puts their jobs in danger of postponement, or worse, the permanent stoppage of business operations. During the COVID-19 crisis, make a proactive effort to understand your employees’ situation. Address any concerns and provide answers to their questions. Most importantly, be honest about the current status of your business and manage their expectations.
Although we are months into the COVID-19 pandemic, the crisis shows no sign of ending soon. By improving employee communication during this time of uncertainty, your employees will stay committed and reassured that your business is making great efforts to keep them safe.
Original article provided by Handle.com