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Digital Engagement to Boost Employee Morale

Apr 14, 2020

While you cannot completely control the work atmosphere, there are several ways in which you can amp up their morale.

Digital Engagement to Boost Employee Morale, Silver Lining Amidst Disruption

Anxiety, burnout, disengagement and low morale are some of the concerns which employees are experiencing due to the sudden shift to a virtual way of working and managing life. Social media is bombarding them with news and stories about layoffs, pay cuts, and even closures that has further added to their insecurities and uncertainty. In a time like this, organisations are finding ways and means to keep the employee morale and spirits in check to ensure their overall wellbeing. That’s a serious challenge and a one-size-fits-all approach won’t work given the diversity in today’s workforce.

Your decisions and actions during this time matter. It will not only have a profound impact on your employees’ morale but also on business continuity.

From giving a physical pat on the back to recognise specific actions, meeting in person to celebrate employee milestones, work anniversaries, conducting townhalls, going out for team lunches to this time of COVID disruption. Things have changed drastically, physical distancing has become a new norm, online and digital are the new mandates to drive engagement and collaboration to boost employee morale. And that’s the silver lining.

While you cannot completely control the work atmosphere, there are several ways in which you can amp up their morale, give them the reassurance they’re seeking, lessen their insecurity and confusion, inspire them to stay positive and work efficiently.

Let’s look at these 4 recommendations to boost employee morale leveraging digital collaboration and engagement:

#1 Setup Virtual ‘Inspiration’ Cafes

Apart from regular emails, messages, or even calls, managers can set up virtual ‘Inspiration’ Cafes with their teams to keep the connect going even in these times of physical distancing leveraging online meeting platforms. Make it your own hangout place, like a virtual cafeteria to have team conversations over coffee or lunch to encourage connectedness. You can put up a theme, give it a name, jazz it up, and discuss not only work but also anything personal wellbeing, productivity, business updates, new projects, and any critical announcements.

This will do a lot of good in a time when everyone is trying to adapt to the new norm of WFH. Make this a practice; repeat it at least once or twice a week. This will not only make your employees feel more engaged with you, it will also give them an opportunity to clear their doubts at all levels.

#2 Recognise, More Than Ever Before

The employees might not experience pat on the back kind of recognition for at least a year or even more. This doesn’t mean we stop recognising, perhaps recognition will matter more than ever to keep the employees motivated in these challenging times. It is very important for your employees to feel appreciated and valued for the work they’re doing to ensure business continuity. This is the time to activate and leverage online and digital recognition mediums to recognise specific actions, organisational values, behaviours, community support, innovative business continuity ideas, team collaboration, and everything that deserves an appreciation.

Authentic and timely recognition will greatly boost your employees’ morale and improve their productivity. Do not wait for the lockdown to get over and recognise them in person for the work they did weeks ago. Act now, use your recognition program to send a meaningful recognition, you could also record a video and surprise them with a nice message.

#3 Provide Access to Online Wellness Experts and Mentors

Suddenly personal wellbeing has taken a hit. Working from home might sound convenient for our known gig workers but for regular employees not familiar with such a routine, their general body clock goes for a toss. Managing household tasks along with regular work becomes a tough ask. In this hustle, employees often forget to take the required breaks, lose the track of time and spend more time on calls, as that’s the only way to connect.

This results in anxiety, frustration and of course stress, during these times as an employer we must look for online wellbeing sessions with some experts and also look at inviting our own employees as wellness mentors to conduct online sessions focused on physical, mental, financial or even community wellbeing. A combination of virtual yoga, meditation, and group laughter therapy sessions can work wonders in cracking smiles amongst your employees. Not only smiles, it will also bring positivity in them, remember this time is tough for all, and together we can weather this storm.      

#4 Keep Your Game Strong through Virtual Learning

The biggest question in front of us is, what kind of world will emerge post COVID-19 pandemic? While we are adapting to the new norms of working from home and physical distancing, there’s a definite need to accelerate our efforts on learning during these unprecedented times. Organisations must look at bringing online learning modules focused on new skills development, manager trainings, product awareness courses, sales trainings, compliance and more on the learning front for employees to be ready for the near future demands of business. The continuity in learning must go on.

Organisations should leverage their LMS or online learning platforms to enable continuous learning for their employees to ensure productivity and collaboration, and to boost employee morale. This is an investment that would reciprocate in the form of employee commitment and loyalty for a very long period of time.

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