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Resilience during COVID-19 pandemic

As we further navigate and process the changes brought about by the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic, managers and directors of businesses remain under pressure.  Not only are management on various organisational levels re-evaluating and re-aligning strategic direction, but they are also required to effectively manage teams that worked from home for a significant portion of the year,  which is shaping an entire new organisational culture and taps into new motivational paradigms.

The following techniques will contribute to surmounting the unique management drawbacks faced by many:

  • Walk the talk

Constantly be a role model and break larger projects or tasks into achievable goals. Actions speak louder than words when having to motivate others to achieve and perform in difficult periods.

Employees need to believe that management understands their realities and that problems or challenges are not ignored. This does not imply that management must react to all employee requests, but will ensure that trust and psychological safety, which are important facets of any employment relationship, are re-established.

  • Trust equals excellence

There are various studies confirming that trusting employment relationships are linked to positive work attitudes such as engagement and commitment.

Management can play a crucial role in assisting employees to further capitalise on their own insights into the future. Employees from various industries have been forced to operate independently and autonomously. Reverting back to managerial styles where trust is questioned (for instance micro-management), will defy such personal growth.

  • Appreciation

Praise and genuine appreciation may not be front of mind to many at this point in time.

Highlighting achievements and rewarding those performing consistently will continue to motivate employees even during periods of increased working hours and commitment to drive organisational goals.

  • Shift the focus

During a recent COVID-19 webinar on workplace management during the COVID-19 pandemic, Esther Perel, Therapist, Author and Speaker, stated that “someone needs to hold the dream”. During difficult periods, be it a COVID-19 pandemic or any other social-, pollical-, technological- or economic challenges faced, management are in the privileged position to guide and shift employee focus onto longer-term matters which will make an impact on the firm. As such, managers across various organisational levels play a crucial role in facilitating and enabling the shift to a longer-term outlook for employees. Some employees may not be able to gain perspective, so it remains crucial to actively focus on important matters that aid business longevity.