Pandemic fatigue is plaguing employees across organizations. The coronavirus outbreak has brought a massive economic crisis and bouts of anxiety, adding to the daily stress of workers.
Employees find it difficult to concentrate on their tasks because of their pandemic fatigue, which impacts their performance. As a result, your productivity as an organization goes down.
As a manager or team leader, it’s your responsibility to check in with your people. You need to give them whatever support you can that would help them alleviate their stress. This way, your employees develop more trust in you as a manager, and their performance improves as well.
Below are four practices you can do to re-energize your team and help them cope with pandemic fatigue.
Be understanding and lenient
The first step is to acknowledge that these are stressful, unprecedented circumstances, so it’s natural for your employees to feel exhausted. Don’t punish them for being too fatigued to work. It’s important that you allow your workers to take sick days. Otherwise, their condition might balloon into a more serious health problem.
Also, giving your employees an extra day to rest can re-energize them, helping them bring their performance back up.
Establish clear coordination and communication within the team
Second, communication is critical during these uncertain times. Ask your employees to inform you at least two hours before their shift if they won’t be in. This should give you enough time to look for someone who can relieve them of their duties for the day.
Be sure to create a clear procedure to relieve workers from their duties if they need to take a sick day. This way, the employee can take their much-needed rest without affecting your operations.
Communication is a two-way street, so you shouldn’t just rely on your workers to tell you if they feel unwell. Watch out for signs of fatigue, such as inability to concentrate, frequent yawning, and difficulty keeping their eyes open. Spotting these symptoms early can help you prevent fatigue-related errors and injuries.
Be strategic with scheduling
Some workers are more productive in the morning, while others work more effectively during the afternoon. Consult with each of your employees and ask what their preferred working hours are. You can schedule their shifts around their preference. This kind of scheduling allows you to maximize your manpower, making sure everyone is at their peak performance for most of their shift.
Also, consider offering flexible work hours. This work schedule appeals the most to those working from their homes since they still have to do chores and maybe take care of their children.
If possible, you can also rotate groups of workers who are assigned to strenuous or repetitive tasks. Working in shifts allows one group to rest and reduces the risk of repetitive strain injuries.
Offer incentives and benefits
Apart from flexible hours, additional employee incentive ideas like a shuttle service, food allowance, and childcare benefits are incredibly helpful.
Transportation benefits appeal the most to employees who need to report to the office but live far away. Offering alternative transportation not only alleviates their commute stress, but also helps them maintain social distancing.
Childcare benefits are also valuable amid the pandemic, especially since many parents are still wary about sending their kids back to school. A study by Care.com also found that 60 percent of working parents believe their performance would improve if they received employer-sponsored childcare benefits.
Don’t let your workers suffer from pandemic fatigue alone. Team leaders must actively manage the energy and well-being of their workforce and cultivate positive work relationships. Taking care of your people not only keeps your team high-performing, but it also increases employee loyalty — both of which help future-proof the company.