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Many employees will have been working from home for months on end now, so perhaps it is time to do your best to boost employee morale during these challenging isolation periods.
There are so many simple things you can do, whether you are willing to invest some money or want to do something for free. Showing your employees that you value them and their commitment and hard work will do wonders for all employees’ mental health. It will also help with managing the remote team better and bring them closer together.
1. Arrange Non-Work Related Video Calls With Staff
In order to keep an eye on your employees’ wellbeing, try to arrange a non-work related video call with your staff every so often. This could be a one to one casual chat or in a group, but having a fun conversation with the staff can encourage them to open up more to talk about anything on their minds.
For example, a parent might be really struggling with home schooling, so chatting to another parent could help them to realise they aren’t alone and maybe even pick up some tips. Perhaps someone is finds it difficult to stay motivated with exercise, so someone else suggests the team take on a challenge to do 10,000 steps a day each. You could just end up having a good chat and catch up like you would when you usually have lunch or drinks after work.
Having that bit of social contact with colleagues outside of their daily routine could be just the incentive they need to perform better while working from home.
2. Send Out Care Packages
One thing you can do is to send out care packages to each employee. This could be a box with ingredients to bake something, a collection of things including a food voucher or coupon for a take away, some spa evening essentials or a few things to help with home workouts.
If you have a bit more to spend, you could fill a box with superfoods like chia seeds, spirulina powder, magnesium supplements and sunflower seeds to inspire employees to be conscious of their health, as this also helps to maintain good mental health.
You don’t need to spend a fortune, but receiving a small and useful gift unexpectedly in the post for some self-care will mean a lot to your staff.
3. Do Fun Activities Over a Video Call
Along with catch ups, you could arrange fun activities for everyone to join in with over virtual video chats like Zoom. You could organise a fun team building activity like singing karaoke together, hosting a quiz or gaming together as a group which is possible with online games like Minecraft on a private server for your team’s security. This will help to bring your team together and you can choose the activity to suit your budget.
You could organise one of these calls a week and pass the responsibility around the group to host the evening if they feel comfortable doing so. It will be something different that people will look forward to each week apart from the usual remote work communication.
4. Set Weekly Challenges
Another way to keep people motivated and the morale high is to set your employees weekly challenges. This might be to do 50,000 steps in a week, to meditate everyday, to learn a new skill or you could send out a healthy recipe for everyone to try. Having something non-work related to aspire towards could really help to establish a healthy work-life balance during difficult times. Encourage them to share their achievements on their social media profiles to add an additional boost from their friends. This will also help your business build a good reputation for staff appreciation.
5. Set a Monthly ‘Self-Care’ Budget
Providing employees with a self-care budget is another lovely way to show them how much they are valued. Tell your staff they can spend up to £30 a month on something that will make them happy, then if they provide the receipt they can be reimbursed.
It is up to you, but many places that do this say it can’t be spent on alcohol or general retail therapy, so it must be spent on something more closely directed to mental health. This could be houseplants to brighten up a space, baking equipment if baking helps someone to be calm, home workout equipment or a subscription to a meditation app.
6. Offer an Early Friday Finish
Many of your employees are probably battling with so many other things aside from work in a difficult times like this, so you could consider offering a 2pm finish on a Friday. This will give your employees time to do something they enjoy, catch up on some housework or simply relax before the weekend begins. The impact of finishing a few hours early can be phenomenal and will be highly appreciated by your staff, who may then be more willing to put in the odd extra hour here and there.
Daisy Moss is a freelance writer specialising in business and real estate, with a love for employee wellbeing. When she isn’t writing you will probably find her attempting to bake, and failing!