How to keep your teams engaged during lockdown?

Strange times… Unprecedented you (and everyone else) may say.

The upshot is lots of your teams are now working from home.

So, what do you do?

How do you keep everyone engaged?

This is a question that I’ve been asking HR, Internal Comms and Engagement Managers all over the UK.

Here’s what 5 of them are doing…

#1 – PUTTING MENTAL HEALTH FIRST AT SGS PACKAGING EUROPE

Internal Communications, Scott Murphy:

“Here at SGS we are working with employees to ensure they know the best route for any mental health issues they have over this different and difficult time we find ourselves in. To ensure the path is clear we are working with the IT department for the implementation of direct links to our chosen charity, Mind on all email signatures. We have daily emails from our communications to give people tips working from home and keep engagement. To help engagement we have team talks, activities and weekly reward for the most creative workspace”

How you can use this idea:

What mental health advice do you teams have access to?

How aware are they about their access to this advice?

Even if you have a good mental health support system in place, it’s possible that not everyone knows about it. Right now, when people are experiencing uncertainty in every way, mental health support is more important than ever.

#2 – DAILY, COMPANY-WIDE CATCH-UPS AT G&P QUALITY RECRUITMENT

Sales Director, Danielle King:

“We have a daily meeting via LifeSize video conferencing. It’s ensured that we all work together to manage the key issues affecting different parts of the business on a daily basis, and in doing so has ensured we all keep in contact. The positive by-product from this is we are working even more effectively as a team across the whole company.”

How you can use this idea:

How are you keeping in touch with your teams?

Do you have a regular meeting booked in every day / couple of days?

Now, more than ever, close contact is crucial. Having a regular meeting planned, when everyone knows to check-in could be a really important time of the day. As Danielle says, it could lead to your team working together more effectively than ever before.

#3 – GETTING THE KIDS INVOLVED AT UnivarSolutions

Internal Communications Manager (EMEA), Hayley Lamper:

“We’re using Teams and have organised lots of virtual events. Some getting the kids involved, so Mum and Dad can work and get a bit of peace. We’re even doing live exercise classes at lunchtime.”

How you can use this idea:

How are you helping your teams who are parents cope with the home situation?

It’s a tough time for parents. Working hours have fully blurred into family hours. It means that routines have been completely knocked-out of sync and chaos reigns. As a company, is there anything you can do to support them during this time? Are there virtual events or activities that you can organise so the parents can get their kids involved too?

In other words… Who’s the undercover Joe Wicks in your company?

#4 – FUN AND GAMES AT PINNACLE SPORTS

HR Manager, London Office, Nadeesha Perera:

“We’ve actually started a new game – guess who’s house! Every morning we ask our teams to send in a few photos from around their house to our central Coordinator. Then we post them centrally, and it’s up to our people to guess whose house is which photo! We then award the person who guesses most correctly.”

How you can use this idea:

How are you injecting some fun into your teams’ days?

How are you embracing the work from home situation?

Introducing small games into the days of your teams could have a huge impact on their morale, however, there’s more to it than that. Including fun elements into your comms platforms increases engagement dramatically. Making those platforms fun and interesting means people are far more likely to engage in the platform as a whole – make clear that your comms platforms aren’t only business, and you could see big increases in engagement too.

BRINGING IT TOGETHER

There is no right answer here, and the ideas to keep people engaged are endless.

One thing that has been made clear with my chats with others is that the work landscape is changing now and won’t return to normal. Think ahead to how this period will affect the future when offices are re-opened. How will this example that we can all work from home affect the future of your office?

In the meantime, keep up the good work, and look out for next week, when we catch-up with AutoTrader UK, who have been super creative with how they’ve approached lockdown!

Remember to say hello@cwa.co.uk if you need anything from us during lockdown. Video production? PR? Or even just a virtual coffee, let us know!

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Written by
Oliver Lee
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