It has been a year like no other. In unprecedented times we’ve seen the way we socialize, shop and work change potentially forever. With many of the UK workforce now carrying out their job from home, companies have had to take drastic measures to keep afloat in the inevitable economic downturn following the impact of the covid 19 pandemic.
Furlough and survival
We can perhaps best view furlough and the skeleton staff left to keep some companies afloat in sporting terms; the first team were put out and the reserves were furloughed. That might sound harsh, but company bosses would have had to make decisions about which team members had the greater skill set and which ones they could afford to do without. This was about considering who would score your goals, who you’d put in attack and who you needed in defense. We are talking about human beings of course and that is not to say that some furloughed staff aren’t now back to work but ultimately the goal of business is to make money and that is facilitated by people that work hard and efficiently.
A new normal
The process of lockdown in terms of business caused bosses to really look at their team. Ordinarily short of one to ones or an annual appraisal we don’t really scrutinize our team closely, but the global pandemic put business almost on a war footing. Decisions had to be made quickly and for those in charge it caused them to really turn their gaze on their people. In some instances, team members will have shone and surprised you, in other cases you may have had a wakeup call that asked what does that person really offer the business?
Everyone needs to adapt to the economic changes and think about who the best people are to drive the company forward. It’s likely you have had to change your business model so that means thinking about the positions of some staff and sadly for many that has meant redundancies in order to survive. For those staff members left, they now form your first team. But how do you obtain the best from them and ensure they are motivated?
There is a saying that a company is only as good as its people, so your team are incredibly important. Take time to find out who they are outside of work, what are their hobbies and interests, what stresses or obstacles do they have in their life that you could ease? The payoff: increased productivity. Ensure that your team can really get behind the company mission by having a clear understanding of where you are headed and the belief that it can be done. Hand over responsibility and authority to your team, people need to feel empowered and trusted. We all like to feel we are having an impact on the world so make your team feel like they are contributing something meaningful to society, a sense of the greater good.