facebookLinkedInInstagramEventbrite

T: 0845 03456 44
E: enquiries@direction.org.uk

Working from home – Make it work for your team 

Here’s our Managing Director, Angie’s working from home set up 

 

As we’re asked to stay at home, most organisations that are able to are asking their employees to work from home. A lot of employees will welcome the many advantages of working from home but might also struggle to deal with some of the drawbacks, especially in the current climate of general anxiety. 

Working from home and doing so happily is a little bit of a dark art. We’ve been perfecting it at direction for years now. We’re also big advocates of supporting your staff members through change so here are a few ways that you can help them adjust. 

1- Speak to each team member individually 

It’s important to have team contact and calls using emails and video calls, but don’t forget to get in touch with your staff members individually. We know it’s time consuming but it will really make a difference. To make it easier, make a list of all the people that you manage, and call one on each work day. Don’t forget to ask how they’re feeling. Some people will have a lot of friends/family to call. Others might mainly rely on work for social contact. It’s good for you to know who might be struggling so you can give them a little extra support. 

2- Remind them that it’s normal to find it hard

Some people might expect working from home to be easy. A little reassurance around the fact that a lot of people struggle at first can go a long way. You could send a team email explaining that most find it hard to adjust, including a few tips to take care of their mental health (like taking regular breaks, getting dressed, making time for fun). 

3- Encourage them to switch off 

While having flexibility will work for some, it can be a double edged sword for those employees who have a hard time switching off. It’s good to remind them that they still need a work/life balance, even if it’s all taking place under one roof! If you start noticing late/early emails, it might be worth checking that the sender is switching off properly. We’re not talking about policing but about ensuring that your employees keep low stress levels. Remember, employees that work long hours often aren’t more productive. Easy changes like tidying your workspace (especially if it happens to be your dining/kitchen table), piling up paperwork and putting your laptop in its case can really help with switching off.  

As you’re going through this period of uncertainty and change with your employees, it’s an opportunity to remind them you have their back. 

If you feel that your employees need more support than you can provide, we’ve got an Employee assistance programme that can help. We have different membership packages which can be tailored to suit the needs of your organisation. We can also offer a flexible, ad-hoc service.