03 Apr RETURNING TO A TRANSFORMED WORKPLACE – 4 WAYS TO RE-ENGAGE EMPLOYEES
The first three months of 2022 have already passed and organizations and teams are cautiously optimistic as employees returning to an in-person workplace.
Organizations who have focused solely on creating policies, procedures and schedules for the return to the office or hybrid working conditions have only done half of the work to prepare employees to re-enter a new and transforming workplace.
We have seen and experienced different ways of working in the last 24 months and just like the transition to working from home, there needs to be a plan for a successful transition back to the workplace.
The pandemic has accelerated the changing workplace and employees may be returning to a building or work site that are familiar, but their experience going forward will not be. If organizations and teams do not have a plan to re-engage employees upon their return, they risk:
- Poor morale
A SUCCESSFUL RETURN TO THE OFFICE – 4 WAYS TO SUCCESSFULLY RE-ENGAGE
Whether your employees have already returned, or are about to return, there are 4 key things executives, front-line leaders or teams can do to make the transition back to the office.
- REFRESH AND RESTATE YOUR COMPANY VALUES
Revisit your values and get alignment to those in real terms. If we say people first, describe what that means for you team so they can align to that or decide not to. Remember not everyone will be excited to return to the office.
- What could possibly disengage my team upon their return?
- What actions do I want to take to address it?
- DECLARE YOUR EMPLOYEES’ VALUE
Tell them why they are important and the value they have brought while working remotely – increased revenue, customer service, keeping operations stable, etc. Remind them of the value that they can continue to bring as new business plans, strategies or goals take shape.
- Thank employees for committing to stay with the organization
- Focus on integrating new employees who have joined while working remotely
- HAVE REGULAR, MEANINGFUL CONVERSATIONS
What are our successes? Strengths? What’s missing? Checking in and asking questions regularly will create clarity and provide information about what’s happening or what needs to happen.
- Ask questions that provide clarity for employees
- Focus on strengthening and building relationships. Connection is critical to engagement.
- RE-CONFIRM THE OUTCOMES TO BE ACHIEVED
- What are we focusing on? What tools, technology and processes will we need going forward? What are we here to do right now?
- Decide what the rules of engagement will be if we are not all together all the time.
Be as clear as you can and communicate what’s expected especially as things shift along the way. Recognizing that you or your team need to be re-engaged is an important first step. Secondly, know that it’s an on-going process. Your efforts don’t need to be perfect, just consistent.