Employee engagement post lockdown

finnCap Group presents – The Culture Series: Enhancing resilience – Employee engagement post lockdown

In terms of the general public, with COVID-19, we are quite literally all in this together. That feeling is a great leveller and it’s reflected in our employee engagement strategies.

We’ve seen a steep increase in the connectedness between firms and their people over the lockdown period. Receiving a call that is just to say a genuine and sincere “Hello, how are you?” from one’s CEO is at first a nice surprise and second a welcome and delightful change for staff.

Dr Helene Roberts, CEO, Robinson Plc explains how the fundamental change has been that their communication style is less hierarchical, more all-inclusive, and more about people. As we discussed in the previous Culture Series video (watch it here) on changing leadership styles, it is emotional intelligence in leadership that is, quite literally, winning hearts and minds.

With the spotlight so dramatically shone on employee health and wellbeing, communication from the top down has naturally become more personal, collegiate and emotionally guided. There’s more sensitivity to family time, for one. There’s more sensitivity to the physical and mental health impact of lockdown. Many businesses quickly implemented solutions for online GP access and wellbeing support for their staff.

Businesses also found themselves becoming more flexible with their communication styles, balancing the needs of different work patterns of a workforce that might be in equal parts ‘on the ground’, in the warehouse or manufacturing facility, working from home, or furloughed.

“We’ve changed our communication style,” says Dr Helene Roberts. “It’s much more open, and I don’t want to lose that.”

“Business culture and behaviour are critical at this time and as such leaders need to be authentic and open. I strongly believe that by putting employees first, by listening and talking to them directly to fully understand the mood music, we will emerge as stronger businesses.”

The video shares insights and learning on how, through business culture, leaders are dealing with the people challenges during COVID-19, specifically how to:

  • Keep staff motivated
  • Keep teams working effectively
  • Provide change management support and develop resilience
  • Learn from ways of working successes
  • Rethink team formations and plan for skill gaps/shortages, alongside insights on effective leadership styles and skills in a time of crisis.

Company culture has changed quickly as a result of the COVID-19 crisis. The terms of employee engagement had to adapt as the new normal of lockdown encroached, bringing with it a multitude of issues that were understandably difficult to predict.

In this video, our panel discusses ‘Enhancing resilience’ – looking at the longer-term shifts that reflect how communication across businesses has fundamentally changed.

With contributions from;
Dr Helene Roberts, CEO, Robinson Plc
Russell Atkinson, CEO, NAHL Plc
Kieran Callan, CEO, InnovaDerma Plc
& Sam Smith, CEO, finnCap Group
Hosted by Natalie Wharton, CEO, Wharton Business Consulting

Helping to feed the nation during COVID-19
View the finCap blog