The unexpected rise of the COVID-19 pandemic is creating an extreme blow to the nation for almost a year now. This period full of worry and uncertainty is worsened by social distancing guidelines, which may help control the virus and make many people feel alone. Thousands are draining the economy of establishment closures and a surge in unemployment. Each community has been affected during this crisis.
Meanwhile, internet usage has seen an increase during this time. With almost all public gatherings canceled, many people rely their entertainment on streaming services like Netflix and Amazon Prime. Connecting using social media outlets has increased. There are high growth and adaptation in online education. Communicating via group meeting apps such as Zoom and Slack has been popularized.
Like in any situation, there is always a positive side to things. Worldwide joint efforts are here and there. Businesses are pushed to speed up their pace of digital transformation. As much as possible, a work-from-home setup is being practiced, and it has allowed many employees, especially working parents, to balance their time with other important things. The government and private sector have supported and promoted the public’s health and well-being like never before.
It is comforting to see leaders face COVID-19 challenges with compassion, heart, and kindness. In these uncertain times, how you deal with your workers will be remembered for years to come.
Although the pandemic narrowed our social circles, it is still important that we adjust and maintain our routine during the pandemic. It is not difficult with the technologies available today. We can stay social with online gaming and exercise programs. Have virtual class and family reunions. Watch free concerts online and have virtual happy hours.
For leaders, it is essential to lead conversations among your community. Communication from the top to the lowest ranks will be beneficial for everybody’s welfare and mental health. Giving little heartfelt messages through email and Slack will go a long way and help reduce the anxiety many may suffer. It will also be good to send contents that are not specifically COVID-19 related and try not to contribute to the overload people may be experiencing.
To support employees, here are four pointers that can effectively help leaders in community building during this difficult time:
1. Stay in Touch
In the middle of a global pandemic when we’re physically isolated, communication is an essential skill that should be prioritized by businesses of all sizes. In business, much like in life, speaking and active listening are keys to better COVID-19. We have seen such emails from CEOs who have been playing important leadership roles during this crisis. Correspondences that are sincere and contain optimism are vital. Relatable and encouraging messages are necessary to boost spirits.
As many employees are still adjusting to remote work and might be juggling their children’s online learning or might be mourning the death of loved ones or caring for sick family members, it’s an ideal time to adjust demands and practice seeing things from someone else’s perspective. Leaders need to understand the different effects of this pandemic to everyone and be reminded that employees are human beings that need support and comfort, too.
3. Security and Assurance
Building these states of mind during this time is very important. They change what people are willing to do and are essential to their well-being and success. If you want to lay a solid groundwork for your community, you must first take time to uphold and support your workers and all the people surrounding you.
4. Right Decision
A leader reveals his true intentions in his actions much more than in his words. Do the right thing to help. Giving back is critical now in this pandemic. When your employees feel like their well-being has been cared for, that’s when they can do their jobs best.
Most importantly, we can defeat any challenges as long as we help out and remain united together. We will always have the option to get past this together.
This article is based on ideas by Entrepreneur-in-Residence Tristan Pollock.