After a nightmarish 2020, working professionals throughout the nation are finally getting back to their familiar normal amid this new normal. With the vaccines getting ready to be distributed, the second dry run executed, and the number of recoveries crossing the 1cr.-mark, employers are all set to welcome their employees back.
Even though people are supposed to land up in a new and hybrid 2021 workplace, the excitement knows no bounds. But employees will not settle for an unsecured workplace, especially this year. Every employer will have to pay special attention and abide by all the healthcare and safety protocols.
None of us indeed possess certificates in reopening and managing workplaces amid a global pandemic, and these undoubtedly are some uncharted waters. But with all the knowledge and experience gained throughout the last year, organizations will give their best and make this country-wide ‘workplace reopening event’ a massive success.
Forbes says that having no comprehensive policies for COVID-19 safety, lacking flexibility, and being ungrateful and unsupportive of your employees will be some of the biggest mistakes this year and hence should be avoided. Doing so will ensure employee safety, good health, undisturbed productivity, and of course, sanity.
Not having a stringent policy for COVID-19 safety at work will only worsen the situation.
We have calmed our nerves to some extent with the arrival of functional vaccines but this is not a permanent solution yet. So, now when the offices reopen, employers will have to ensure that –
- Employees are educated about and entitled to all the government healthcare guidelines and policies
- Potentially sick employees are proactively taken care of
This way, every organization will be able to protect its employees in this critical phase.
Flexibility in work will be an uncompromising requisite henceforth.
77% of employees have admitted to being more productive in the flexible WFH structure. Be it the work schedule or the safety aspect, following the letter-of-the-law will no more yield the desired results. With a reshuffle in the organizational attitude, an inclusive and understanding approach will trend in 2021.
When the employees return to work, they will look for support and gratitude from their employers.
It is no secret that the pandemic had an undeniable negative impact on mental health. When appreciated suitably, 69% of employees have confessed to being more motivated and working harder. To be a supportive mentor to your employees, you may consider –
- Communicating transparently with them
- Offering them a comprehensive mental health insurance policy and required screening tools
- Sponsoring seminars and retreat sessions
This back-to-work seems like a homecoming to the majority, and hence it will take some time. And as managers or supervisors, before you call your teams back to their bays, you need to ask yourself whether the return is essential or not and whether you can ensure complete staff safety or not. The way to a safe and healthy workplace 2021 passes through your answers!
So, how much would you rate yourself for your workplace 2021 readiness?