The New Normal: How to Keep Your Culture and Team Motivated Working from Home Post Covid-19


As the Covid-19 crisis continues around the world, business leaders are busy devising ways for their operations to work safely in the future, particularly in an environment where social distancing may need to be maintained for the longer term. Inevitably, many more jobs will be based at home, on a permanent or part-time, more flexible basis. So how can home-working employees adjust to life without a collective office in the 'new normal'?


Some of our clients explained the following tips for maintaining culture and motivation as they plan to make home-based jobs more permanent, productive, and more satisfying overall during this adjustment period.

 

SET THE TEAM’S NORMS:

It is a different experience to work at home than to work at a regular office, and that is why you have to set norms for your team to follow in your new setup. You can start by setting how the team can collaborate on different virtual platforms, how often your meetings would be, and much more to keep them in touch at all times. It’s also commendable to assign the use of specific communication tools for different purposes and for other requests that may have different levels of urgency. That can fulfill the lack of engagement you usually have in regular offices.

 

Keep the Members Engaged:

A greater structure will help the leader and the team to work accordingly. It is best to keep the employees updated to keep them engaged. Share every meeting’s agendas and minutes. The team leader should also have a reference like trackers to know what's already done and what needs to be done.

 

ESTABLISHING GOOD COMMUNICATION:

For a team to work successfully, they must have a good rapport. That works in virtual workplaces too. It may be hard at times for there may be hindrances in communication such as poor internet connection. That’s what team leaders should look for, in terms of issues.

 

Conducting Regular Virtual Meetings:

A team leader should often call for meetings to stay updated. To have a successful meeting, the leaders have to ensure the availability of everyone and high-speed connections to avoid other challenges. It is also best that the means of communication you choose is available to everyone in the team.


Keep Meetings Short (20 minutes max):

Keep the meeting short to avoid losing your employees' concentration. Focus on the key points. Avoid letting anyone talk just by himself/herself. Make sure to ask questions to have engagement with your employees and ensure that everyone participates during the meeting.

The leader should also understand sudden excuses and inevitable distractions. Now that all the employees work at home, the way they live in their homes and offices just got mixed and so the leader should understand when things come up while at work.


GETTING THE TEAM DRIVEN:

The best way to keep the whole team motivated is to balance everything that has been said. Keep on having conference calls, chats, and video calls to update the employees now and then. Remember, do not overdo it. Employees should also have their freedom to do the work their way given enough time. Even though the goal is to keep them engaged at work by regular updates, you have to trust them with their work too.


Set Clear Goals and Deadlines:

Clarity plays an important role in communication. The team leader should always send clear messages. The employees should be able to understand the goals and priorities clearly, for them to be able to do what needs to be done. The leader shouldn’t be tired of sending messages and communicating very often with employees. The presence of the leader will help employees cope up with the work setting they have now.


Never get tired of reminding the team once in a while. It will help them keep in mind what they are trying to achieve. Keep in touch with them and provide them the goals and priorities that they need for the week.


Empathize:

Aside from the fact that it is a whole different experience to work at home, there are other problems that the team members may be suffering due to the pandemic. Be mindful, empathize, and check up on the team members often, not just for the work, but also for their mental health.


Ask them how you can help with the problems they are facing or at least give time to hear their concerns. That would make the work-from-home setting a lot healthier.

 

Haver Regular Personal Talks:

You should also give time for personal talks. Even though you work at home, you should not stop being social. You may have more chances now to get to know other colleagues. Make time for personal talks. Don’t let your relationship with colleagues be lost just because you aren’t able to talk to them like the way you do on regular workdays. Talking is a great way to spend break time and also to strengthen your relationships with colleagues.


Keep the Team Updated:

Make sure the people are always updated. Let them know what is happening within the industry. The leader has to do this since most likely, people will ask questions regarding businesses and plans.


Recognize their Success:

Never forget to celebrate success. With the struggles that everyone faces today, and as teams work separately, it is not hard for people to feel isolated, down, and negative. That is why it is essential to keep track and acknowledge successes and accomplishments, be it big or small. Recognition can help boost the team’s motivation and morale.


CHECK THE STATE OF YOUR TEAM:

Since the pandemic is going on for months, most likely, you are already practicing the work-from-home setting. While there is a big chance that your employees have already adjusted, others are probably behind. That is why you have to check them up. To be fully productive in this work setting, they should be comfortable with the setup, have all the things they need, and have support in the areas where they need it most.


Help them Balance their Lifestyle:

As some are still coping, the leader should make sure that every employee is productive and has a balanced work-home lifestyle. Some might feel foreign and end up feeling burned out, so the leader should guide the team to manage and work effectively.

 

Take Note and Address Problems:

It might look minimal, but it greatly impacts the team’s productivity. Just by simply checking up on your team, you can immediately address any problems that need to be addressed. Also, by knowing any issues, you will know what areas you should put more focus into.


KEEPING YOURSELF MOTIVATED:

To do these all, you have to be motivated as well. There are things that you can do to help you make everything work at these trying times. All you need is dedication, discipline, and hard work.


Keep Track of Your Responsibilities:

Although you are at home and have all the right to do what you want, you should keep in mind that you have a responsibility. The best way to formally start your working hours at home is to make small changes with yourself. You can do this by changing your clothes and going to your workplace rather than working with your pajamas still on while lying on the bed. Make a schedule that you can follow without having a hard time.

 

Establish a Work-Friendly Home:

You also have to make it clear for everyone within the house that you are working.


That will help you have a more work-friendly home, especially if they understand and give you space and silence that you need. Remember that you shouldn’t let work swallow your whole day. Make time for your family and friends.

 

Give Yourself a Break:

Never forget to take breaks. Even though you're at home, working can still tire you. Take short breaks now and then to keep your body alive and moving. It will also help you focus more on your work during work hours.


Summary:

All the rapid changes made by the Covid-19 pandemic are truly hard to face. Yet, everyone should keep on moving. These will work as your guide on how you can keep your team motivated at these trying times. Remember, you have to think about their being as well. Covid-19 may stay for long, and that is why the work-from-home setup may be the new normal for almost every employee around the world. The best way to keep it productive is to keep your team motivated and goal-oriented. You may have to experiment at times for this is new for everyone. In the long run, hopefully, the whole team gets a hold of how to keep up with the ‘new normal’.

 

 

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Silicon Valley Associates is ideally positioned to support the continual demand from tech companies and IT Departments looking to hire in Hong Kong, Asia, and Worldwide. Please let us know if you would further advise on the above topic or your hiring needs

 

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