Working from home has allowed many of us flexibility that we never had in the office. However, with this flexibility new challenges have arisen, from habits that may have been lost, to the ease in working past shifts, and difficulties in separating work and home-life. It can be tough when all aspects of your life happen in the same space, but there are absolutely things that can be done to help alleviate much of the difficulty that can come with working from home. Here are ten tips to help you support your employees’ wellbeing through the remote working environment:

1) Encourage breaks

Working from home adds a pressure to be constantly next to your email or phone, though that’s not the case. Encourage your team to take the breaks they deserve. It’s okay, and in fact good for your mindset, to step away a few times a day. Doing so will actually help promote productivity. A refreshed mind is much more effective than a tired one.

2) Walking video check-ins

Not only can you tell your employees to take a walk on their breaks, you can also schedule walking video check-ins where you walk with your employee outside. This ensures they get a change of scenery, and you get another touch point with them – further driving engagement.

3) Foster team support

Create a rolling buddy system within your team to encourage teammates to check-in with one another throughout their day. You can assign a different buddy every other week and ask your employees to send you a piece of information you’d like teammates to discuss, helping to hold them accountable to the check-ins. Teammate check-ins are a great way to reinforce to your team that they are supported, whilst getting them comfortable with teammate relationships – allowing team building exercises to become even more productive.

4) Team building exercises

Organise team building activities to reinforce to your employees they aren’t alone in their situation, nor in how they are feeling. To help you create an effective virtual event, consider getting some assistance from a specialist. Blue Hat Teambuilding specialise in driving team engagement and productivity. Blue Hat offer a refreshing virtual activity called “The Wellbeing Wakeup”, that aims to help improve what they consider the ‘Five Ways of Wellbeing’: being active, getting creative, instilling connection, stirring mindfulness and engendering community. It is aimed to improve employee’s life both at home and work.

5) Promoting PTO usage

Though paid time off (PTO) is part of your employees’ compensation, they can often feel nervous to take it. Remind your team of the benefits of taking time away from work and encourage them to use their hard-earned PTO for a break. Sometimes employees need a little extra encouragement to give themselves the grace they need.

6) Advocate for establishing routines

One of the easiest things to go out the window when you start working from home is your morning routine… who needs one when you can log into work from bed? Actually, everyone does. A morning routine is extremely beneficial in building your mindset for the day. Invite your team to create a new routine that helps them take care of themselves in the morning, so they start their day feeling energised.

7) Hold engaging one-to-one meetings

Ensure you are going beyond the surface with your staff in your recurring meetings. Ask them how they’re doing, struggles they are having working at home, if they feel connected to the team, etc. With each question you ask your employees about their experiences, the more they will recognise you care for them, which can help improve their wellbeing and relationship with you along the way.

8) Highlight and demonstrate boundaries

Not only should you be telling your team to hold themselves to their schedule, and log off when their shift ends, but you should exemplify the same. Your team admires the professional you are, so if you show them a strong professional maintains work-life balance, they will feel encouraged to do the same.

9) Encourage dedicated workspaces

Though it can feel tempting to work from your bed every day, that starts to eat away at the feeling of work-life balance. As you are helping your employees combat work from home challenges, encourage them to create a dedicated workspace in their home, incorporating things that energise them and bring them joy.

10) Speak optimistically

The word optimistically was intentionally used. Be direct and honest about the reality of the working situation. A spade is a spade, and false positivity will only erode trust. Whilst doing so, you can use the opportunity to build community with your employees, openness to discussion, and optimism toward the future.

Working from home can be fantastic, and in many cases improve productivity, but that doesn’t mean it comes without challenges. With an intentional approach, you can help alleviate your employees’ challenges, foster engagement on your team and improve their entire wellbeing.
To explore ‘The Wellbeing Wake Up’ event at Blue Hat Teambuilding, click here

Written by Ben Parkinson

Published on 20 April, 2021

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