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Protect Your Employees After Lockdown: 3 Recommendations to Encourage Returning Employees

Protect your employees after lockdown – organizational change management consultant - construction worker holding a grinder

If the coronavirus outbreak has put your business in a tough position, it’s understandable that you want to focus more on your organization’s productivity and profit. However, you also need to consider the mental health of your returning employees.

Last year, the World Health Organization (WHO) cautioned that anxiety and depression caused a loss of $1 trillion per year to the global economy. COVID-19 has confined people to their homes and forced them to tackle several unexpected challenges. These factors may have taken a toll on your employees’ mental health.

Many employees are worried because they haven’t seen anything like this before. They are primarily concerned about:

  • Will their job duties change?
  • What will the safety guidelines at work be?
  • Will the other employees wear a mask and follow SOPs?
  • Will they get infected and put their family members at risk?

Whether you’re an executive, manager, team lead, supervisor, or work in a position that directly manages employees, it’s your responsibility to make your workspace safer for the returning staff. You can protect your employees after lockdown by following these recommendations:

1. Become a Direct Gateway to Support

Some workers may not have expressed their anxiety openly and may have reservations about coming back. Arrange meetings with your teams and let them know you care about them. Create a safe space for employees to share their concerns.

It’s possible that your employees are concerned about what kind of support they will get if they test positive at work. Communicate in detail on how your organization will help them regarding medical insurance and, if you have one, your Employee Assistance Program (EAP).

You can also strengthen the mental resilience of your employees by arranging informative sessions. Pick topics that can educate your employees on exercise, hygiene, and relaxation in the post-lockdown world.   

2. Rebuild Your Old Work Environment

Companies reopening in the upcoming weeks need to incorporate SOPs into their work culture. Many employees are paranoid about coming into contact with others. Therefore, evaluate your existing work environment. Assess whether your staff can keep at least a 6-feet distance during their shifts and establish clear direction on how they are to accomplish this.

If need be, hire an organizational change management consultant to create a workspace that complies with social distancing and other COVID-19 safety guidelines.

3. Provide Health Supplies

Hygiene was never more important than it is now. Provide hand sanitizers and promote thorough hand-washing. Placing safety posters can serve as a regular reminder. Depending on your industry, share PPE equipment, such as gloves and facemasks with your employees.

Ionji Consulting: Organizational Change Management Consultant

A little investment in your employees’ mental health can go a long way towards helping your company come out of the pandemic unscathed, while maintaining the loyalty and commitment of your team. At Ionji Consulting, several of our long-term clients have contacted our organizational change management consultants to build the morale of their returning employees. We can do the same for you. You can reach us at [email protected] or by calling us directly at 800-714-3428.

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