Good company culture is the foundation for positive brand impressions and customer experience… but Zoom happy hours can only go so far to motivate employees.
How can you enforce a positive company culture while working remotely?
Below is a framework we used to keep our employees motivated and rallied around our mission while remote:
1. Communicate clear, credible, and consistent information. Being a small business this year has been challenging to say the least. Our CEO has made it his priority to keep us updated on reliable COVID-19 information and how it affects our company.
The CDC has a Coronavirus website dedicated to providing factual, updated information on the crisis. We suggest giving business updates at least once a month via video or voice, but more frequent updates through Slack or email can keep the communication lines open.
2. Provide opportunities for connection. It can be tough for people to feel a sense of connection and empathy while apart. Our team set daily 15-minute huddles to check in during quarantine. These huddles were a chance for our team to bounce off ideas, express emotions, and share thoughts. We also used them to align on priorities and collaborate for quick action.
Many post-pandemic surveys have shown employees want to be heard and accommodated right now. During the COVID-19 pandemic, here's what employees want from leadership.
3. Emphasize employee wellness. It can be difficult to separate work from personal life when working from home full-time. In addition to hard stops at the end of the work day, our team encouraged breaks throughout the day and "mental health days" when needed most.
According to a recent Gallop poll, only 45% of employees surveyed feel their well-being is of concern to their employer. For larger teams, creating an internal site for resources, feedback, and FAQs can go a long way during such a turbulent year.
4. Continue Social Connections. Like many teams, we had regularly scheduled Zoom happy hours and remote team-building activities (virtual trivia, best Zoom background competitions, etc.). We continue to iterate on these to keep morale high and forge new connections at work.
Prior to the pandemic, Glassdoor found that 75% of candidates considered an employer’s mission, culture, and brand even before applying for a job. Fun ideas for virtual celebrations can be an easy way to keep the energy up.
5. Lead with your values. One of our core values — resilience — really got put to the test this year. When times got challenging, our team focused on bringing this value to life. The results can be incredible when a whole team is working with the same values in mind.
Many employees are now in situations where they are working from home while also homeschooling kids, or balancing other priorities during this stressful time. Be sympathetic to your employees' changing situations and find ways to apply company values in a personal way.
As companies continue to figure out plans for the remainder of the year into 2021, it’s essential to keep your employees in the loop and rallied around your brand purpose and values.
For creative ideas on keeping company culture positive while remote, reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.