It is possible that until June you thought “I’ll return to the office soon.” It’s now October, and it is clear that when we return, things will not be the same. Remote working has quickly taken over as the standard during the pandemic. The shift has left a mark on a lot of things, perhaps nothing bigger than company culture.
Before the pandemic, working in a centralised office had its perks. You could define the work environment, set work hours and clearly communicate your goals, mission and values. Now however there is a drastic change in everything relate to our work life. There’s no “work environment”, nor do people have set working hours. The pandemic has made communicating and maintaining your company culture a challenge, especially
It doesn’t have to be this way though. We are here to tell you that even when remote working, it is very much possible to keep your company culture alive and well. From Google to Mozilla Foundation, many companies have embraced remote working and adapted their company culture accordingly.
If you are struggling to adapt, here are a few easy tips to try. Making the best use of the situation will not just allow you to whether the storm, but also thrive.
Remote working is the best time to do away with red tape. Rather than follow hierarchy, use this time to establish an open communication policy. Use all the tools at your disposal to set up a communication system that works for your company.
An open communication system, where everyone is reachable, is a great way to allow people to be heard. Of course, there is the possibility of information overload. If you use multiple communication channels (Teams, email, Slack, WhatsApp), create a company-wide policy on what the purpose of each channel is.
It’s also critical to take feedback. A weekly catch-up is a great way to make them feel valued. It shows you care about them. Along with this, conduct monthly experience surveys to better understand how you can improve. It will help strengthen your team bond and better communicate your expectations.
Prioritize Employee Health and Wellness
It’s a universal truth that at home, you end up spending more hours at work than in-office. To ensure that your employees aren’t overworked, adopt a range of employee wellness programs. This could be as simple as a weekly group yoga/meditation session. If you want something a bit more serious, check out our blog on Employee wellness.
Wellness can also take other forms. You can encourage digital detoxing, at-home workouts and healthy eating as well. Other ways to prioritise wellness include virtual happy hours. Take time off to celebrate birthdays, indulge in trivia nights and share experiences. Not only will your employees feel relaxed, but they will also feel closer to you and the team, which is great for your company culture.
It’s also a good idea to upgrade your healthcare plan. Ensure you are on the best possible plan, one which covers all your employees and gives them great benefits too. Nothing says “we care” more than a healthcare plan that cover’s an employee’s family as well.
Promote Leadership and Upskilling
Chances are, your company has some standout employees who are great at leadership. Give them a platform to share their knowledge, through group leadership/mentorship programs. This helps employees learn and grow from each other. It also helps you build more trust and confidence in them.
The best way to promote leadership is through more autonomy. Encourage employees to test their creative ideas and research new ways of working better. You can also organize regular online training sessions to facilitate employees’ upskilling. Keep them updated on the latest industry trends through a well-designed learning management system (LMS) with collaborative tools.
Redefine Your Company Values
There’s no better time to reflect and redefine your company values. It’s time to upgrade them for the remote working era. Your values should be applicable to all your employees, irrespective of where they are. Since you don’t have an office to hang them up, ask your employees for creative ways of visualising the values in their environment. From desktop wallpapers to bookshelves, there’s always plenty of opportunity!
When going through this process, it is always a good idea to work with your employees. Perhaps they might have an interesting insight you missed. That way, you will create a company culture where everyone feels like they can contribute.
Just because you aren’t in an office, it doesn’t have to be hard to communicate your company culture. These steps are just a start, there are plenty more ways to bring people closer together through technology.
In these strange times, we here at Onsurity have been using these strategies to not just improve company culture, but also our employees’ health and wellbeing. We can do the same for you, through our comprehensive employee healthcare plans. It puts your employees’ health first, while giving you multiple exciting benefits. To find out more, simply head to our website.