Mental health and isolation- Are you doing enough for your employees?
It has consumed our thoughts fuelled our anxiety and we are faced with new work realities, COVID-19 has impacted all facets of business with staff being some of the worst affected. Mental Health in isolation should be a priority for any management team, and if not taken seriously, it could have detrimental impacts on your business and affect the wellbeing of your staff. With the new rules on social distancing and isolating, make sure that your team feels quipped with all the things they can do, to help support their mental and physical wellbeing.
At Momenta we have turned to several traditional and non-traditional platforms to communicate with our staff and ensure that we are giving out key information to help them during this difficult transition. Employee wellbeing is of paramount importance to us and the way we run our business, so we have developed some practical tips to ensure that your staff’s mental and physical wellbeing are being looked after in isolation.
1. Mental health in isolation – what can you do to help your staff cope?
Looking after your mental health during a pandemic is a concept that not many businesses prepared for let alone thought about. Daily we are bombarded by statistics and numbers that would leave anyone in a state of panic and can worsen symptoms of those already suffering from mental health issues. The fear of the unknown can trigger many panic attacks and fuel anxiety. We have asked our staff not to be constantly glued to the news and limit the amount of news they consume in a day and be wary of what sources they investigate.
2. Ensuring our staff are supported during isolation
We have made it a priority that we ensure all our staff feels as safe as possible working from home. Make sure all your staff have the necessary equipment and systems needed for their day-to-day roles but also check up on how they are feeling emotionally and address any issues or warning flags that may arise. Staying in contact is key. Your staff needs to feel supported when they work remotely so ensure the weekly check-ins are still happening and offer personal check-ins to see how staff are coping with the change. Keep communicating. It is key, and you can do so in many versatile ways.
3. Ensure that you are constantly communicating with your global workforce
Do not underestimate the power of communication. Working from home brings with it an array of challenges, especially in the absence of being able to interact with your team and meet in person. We have recommended that staff make an extra effort to call (or use the video function), each other rather than email or message. It is also important that we communicate to a global workforce. Our staff is in various geographies with differing time zones. Our digital platforms allow us to be in constant contact no matter the time or the place. We want to share a united front where we can all celebrate together, be involved in and share news and information across teams and locations no matter which of our global offices you are in’.
4. Give your employees all-round holistic advice:
We like to give our employees advice on an array of topics that we feel will have positive impacts on their all-round wellbeing. This pandemic has brought on a plethora of issues that can affect an individual, so we have created content around the four ‘Ms’: Moving, Munching, Money and Mind. We want to equip our staff with the right tools they can use to not only understand how to keep them and their families healthy but also what to plan financially during these harsh times. Whether it is finding a recipe that will be quick and healthy or spending some of their saved commuting time on trying an exercise such as Yoga or a bodyweight workout that they haven’t done before, this is key in offering your staff support not just on IT related issues but general ones that will affect them daily. Offering advice on mental well being is not enough to look at giving advice and tips on all the key issues affecting them as individuals. You want your staff to feel like they are fully supported and equipped to deal with the pandemic as much as possible.
5. Keep your teams connected
This is simple yet effective in boosting the company morale which has proved to have several beneficial effects on the mental wellbeing of staff. We have various platforms that we use to connect our teams.
– Biweekly mailers: We send out biweekly newsletters with updates from staff members on what they have been up too and what new hobbies they have acquired. This has already proved to be a huge success as staff members will submit an array of content from funny videos and birthday messages, keeping us all up to date with good news and positive messaging.
– Using digital: One of the digital platforms we have used is The HUB, an online portal and a great source for all thing’s wellbeing related. The platform offers discounts on everything from clothes to food as well as gives guidance and advice on wellbeing. Here are some tips our HR departments have created to help ensure that our staff’s wellbeing is being taken care of from home whilst maintaining as high a work-life balance.
6. Financial concerns:
Financial concerns are one of the biggest reasons why individuals suffer from anxiety and especially now with the global economic instability brought by COVID-19, additional economic pressure will be felt by many. We offer tips and hints on the Money page along with budget planner. We also ensure that our staff is updated with any government schemes that could help them such as the government working with the banks offering 3-month mortgage holidays for those who need it.
7. Promote fun online activities
Weekends can be challenging for some so we have also offered some great tips to our staff on some of the virtual events they can try. Online platforms such as the Sofa choir, drawing classes, “quarantine games” or Taskmasters “home taking challenges” are some of the platforms we have recommended on The Hub.
8. Digital is the way forward
This digital platform has helped us reach and support our staff remotely and has allowed us to ensure that we are in constant communication in a time of crisis. Digital transformation has been key for us in ensuring all staff and is constantly updated, educated and prepared to cope with the many additional pressures placed on them as a result of the pandemic.