Now more than ever, we have to take care of our people. We are all on this new personal and professional journey together.
These five essentials can help with your talent strategy as our world continues shifting daily and beyond.
Step 1: Courage
Vision, security and resolve are equally important leadership traits during difficult times. As Gianpiero Petriglieri notes in The Psychology Behind Effective Crisis Leadership one of the most important things you can do for your team is practice “holding”: the psychological term for providing support as well as guidance. Efficiently holding your team, customers and partners requires communicating support and stability. Own the narrative and present your story of assurance and resilience before team members and clients begin to speculate. At this point, holding takes precedence over goal-driven messages. Remain accessible by developing regular and consistent channels between teams and clients. Encourage teamwork and foster a sense of unity by supporting collaboration and productivity through technology. New technology also provides an avenue for culture continuity which fosters a sense of kinship and keeps teams connected.
Step 2: Check-in
Now is the time to begin preparing your business and your team for re-opening or re-configuring and that starts with checking in. Check on current employees (both furloughed and actively working) and partners to assess the status of their lives and work. Retention is important so focus on communicating about the return to work with furloughed employees. Be accessible. Employee safety training is a primary concern for the return to the workplace. Discuss ensuring your employees and customers will have easily available personal hygiene supplies (hand sanitizer, wipes, etc.) along with frequent cleaning services and accommodations for social distancing. Focus on your people during this pre-return stage. It is a good time to evaluate the current employee experience. Full capacity in the workplace will come on a staggered timescale so continue to expand remote work enablement.
Step 3: Come back
Coming back to the workplace or even back into remote work is a challenge as well as an opportunity. The weakest point in the supply chain will determine the success of a return to rehiring, training and attaining previous levels of productivity so take this time to identify any weak links. Evaluate contingent actions in order to return to efficient production at pace and at scale. Make sure you re-engage existing furloughed employees and begin to establish a pipeline for future hiring. Capitalize on key hires: roles that are crucial to fill in order to support strong business outcomes are vitally important. Optimize your remote start-to-finish hiring – from sourcing, screening, online visual interviewing, assessments and testing, remote on-boarding and training can all be accomplished successfully remotely.
Step 4: Clarify
Analyze the impact of new arrangements and digital tools. The structures used pre-COVID may not suit your needs or your goals right now. Attract and engage many types of workers – permanent and contingent – across physical and virtual environments while delivering your employer brand. New platforms and technology can provide for portable work that will drive productivity in efficient ways. Support dynamic work within your team by expanding to new digital tools and platforms. Evaluate previous systems for a potential upgrade to re-imagine how to drive productivity and employee engagement.
Step 5: Correct
This is an opportunity to experiment and innovate in small increments to improve the organization of your team and the systems you use. If demand is low, reform and reform again while you have the time. The pressure is on, but time is plentiful. This opportunity to learn from innovations and experiments will hopefully lead to an uplift in the economy and benefit society over the long-term.
We are working toward the same goal – a return to supporting our communities, our people, and our families through our businesses. With hard work and ingenuity, we’ll get there sooner than later! Our team is here to assist you in any way we can through this journey.