Productivity is one of the most searched topics on the Internet these days. People who keep working from homes (and safe places) have to deal with not only drastic transformation of the workplace but also with a lot of anxiety related to ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, so productivity issues have become relatable to so many of us.
This article is not about your usual ideas like ‘Top 5 pieces of advice to stay productive at home,’ but more about the context that we live in and real changes we can do to stay sane and productive as much as it’s possible.
Be more transparent
Given the massive amount of uncertainty with the coronavirus and growing panic, all of your employees can be more on-edge than usual. From anxiety to apathy – they might demonstrate more emotions than usual. Let them know that it’s okay. Explain company’s strategy, allow people to have a mental break from everything if they need it, be clear about company’s current position and what the upcoming months are going to look like. When you know what’s going to happen, you can prepare yourself for it.
As a leader, you will best serve your team by being a voice of reason and calm. The more you can show up from a place of empathy, respect and understanding, the more those under your leadership will have the ability to calm themselves and to do their work.
Set realistic goals and work on them
The lack of control over ongoing situation outside brings stress to your employees who can eventually fall into a state of learned helplessness, meaning the belief that they can’t do anything because of repetitive uncontrollable stressful events.
Working on tasks with certainty not only leads to better results but serves three quintessential purposes. First of all, it puts your team in a better position than falling victim to paralysis, where nobody can accomplish much of anything. Secondly, it can be a positive redirection from anxious thoughts. Thirdly, it builds a sense of self-efficacy – the idea that you can accomplish your goals. Self-efficacy is an antidote to learned helplessness.
Communicate with your team daily
Schedule formal, daily virtual meetings with your team, where you check in and check out each day to make sure everyone is staying on route. We at ElectroNeek do these check-ins around 10 a.m. or 4 p.m.
On the less formal end, you can send messages to each team member asking how they’re doing and if there is any area where they need your support. The need for daily check-ins may subside over time once your team has adapted to working remotely. Nevertheless, in the beginning, these touch points let you make sure that everyone is connected and ready to work.
Encourage those working with you to take time to sleep, exercise, and generally engage in whatever other activities calm and rejuvenate their heart, mind, body, and spirit – before, after and during office hours. These activities are essential for everyone to stay calibrated.
Add a little help
During this transition from offices to home-offices you will probably see the decrease in productivity for a while. With a lot going on around us, it becomes harder to keep up with tedious, repetitive tasks, people make more mistakes and generally and be more unfocused. For example, Robotic Process Automation (RPA) tools mimic the actions that people do in front of a computer using a mouse and a keyboard to do daily office tasks like extracting information from an invoice or contract and entering data to a spreadsheet or CRM system (Salesforce), while your workers perform more exciting assignments.
Want to learn more about the opportunities that RPA can bring to your company? Reach out to our automation expert for a personalized session and start your automation journey.