Are your staff still motivated? How to keep teams driven during COVID-19

In response to the unprecedented climate presented by COVID-19, businesses around the world have been forced to adapt to remote working environments.

During a pandemic that has generated uncertainty and fear, it is extremely important for leaders to set a positive and productive tone. If a leader can focus on the opportunities this crisis has presented to pivot, adapt to change and create deeper ties of communication across the work force staff will feel more at ease.

Although it’s an uncertain time for many businesses, leaders have a responsibility to guide their employees through this time. In my opinion, if a business can: create trust, foster open communication and confirm organised planning procedures are in place they are in a positive position to garner success and aid in implementing a vision for the future.

A foundation of trust will help teams maintain a positive work environment

Leaders can create levels of trust through transparency and reliability. Open communication will help keep staff aware of their responsibilities. Organised planning is also necessary to keep teams operating effectively in a work from home environment.

Leaders should try to encourage their staff to have their ‘to-do’ lists completed the night before, proactively schedule meetings and keep patience at the forefront of the process.

In order to keep their teams driven, leaders need to recognise their staff’s negative and positive motivators. An article by the Harvard Business Review stated, “The six main reasons people work are: play, purpose, potential, emotional pressure, economic pressure, and inertia.”

It’s critical that leaders understand that in light of the current climate, the negative motivators are spiking and the positive motivators may be in danger of declining. Leaders can use these six motivators to check in on their staff and make sure the positives outweigh the negatives.

Get as creative as possible during this time with the methods that work for you and your team. As important as having the three procedures in place of trust, open communication and organised planning are, don’t forget to implement a rigorous work-life-balance system.

It’s important to let your staff know you support them, believe in them and are keeping their mental health top of mind during this challenging time will help keep respect at the forefront of your business structure.

There are many vital aspects of employing and retaining a talented and engaged team. No system will work perfectly for every team as each business is unique in its individuals and standard work flow.

However, as a leader, ensuring your attitude is set up to maximise your staff’s talent and potential will catapult productivity to the next level and make everyone’s lives run more smoothly.

Marcus Marchant is the CEO of Vistaprint Australia.

Marcus Marchant is the CEO of Vistaprint Australia.