Taking Care of Your Team as They Return to Work
For the last eight weeks, most of the world has been living in some kind of lockdown.
Depending on your location, this might have been anything from complete lockdown, only leaving your home for the absolute essentials, to a looser lockdown, with guidelines on your movements and who you should and shouldn’t see.
These lockdowns have had a profound effect on businesses all over the world.
Some have been forced to close completely, others have been allowed to operate under strict restrictions and social distancing guidelines, and many have been trying to work remotely as much as possible, with their staff working from home and staying out of the office.
But, for many, the time has come to start thinking about re-opening and bringing staff back into the workplace.
How you do this will depend on the nature of your business and how you work.
Social distancing might be easy if you work in an office, but more of a challenge if your workplace is customer-facing.
Whatever you do, however, taking care of your team during this unprecedented time must be your priority.
Return to Work: Stick To Current Guidelines
Guidelines and restrictions are different all over the world.
So, it’s essential that you check on the rules every step of the way.
You may want to get in touch with someone from your local government if you require further advice, and there should be plenty of information online to help you.
This information will include social distancing guidelines and recommendations on PPE.
Remember, if in doubt, ask.
The health of your team has to come first, even if this means opening up more slowly, or waiting until you think that things are safer for your employees and customers.
Using Crown Linen for uniforms and laundry can improve hygiene.
You should provide hand-washing supplies and any PPE that is relevant to your business.
Consider Their Individual Needs
Coming back to work won’t be the same for every member of your team. Some of them may be in a higher risk group.
Others may have children at home if their school is not yet able to open.
Consider each person’s individual needs instead of putting blanket rules on their return.
Focus on Relationships
Staff morale is crucial as we try to return to work. Your team members may not have seen each other for a long time, and it might take a while for them to adjust to their new 6 feet apart relationships.
But, research shows us that employees with strong relationships are able to get through the harder times more effectively.
Give them time to catch up and bond as they return to work, and the transition may be smoother.
Make Remote Working Available Where Possible
Ask yourself honestly if all of your employees need to return to work? Or at least if they need to return full time?
Could they still work remotely, at least some of the time, to reduce risks?
Give Them Time
Remember, everyone has been through a challenging time.
It would have taken the time to adjust to remote working, and it will take the time to adjust again to this new normal. Be patient.