What are the 5 things your employees need most now?

Just when we thought that the crazy year that was 2020 was coming to an end, we were faced with a harsh new reality. 2021 wasn’t going to start off any easier. Not with the second wave of infections in the pandemic and a second lockdown. This has not only affected employees in how they work but also how they feel. And it’s important for managers and business owners to recognise this and be able to give employees the support that they need.

Most people talk about motivating and equipping staff and that can be incredibly hard when working remotely. But there are things that you can do. In a recent webinar (see video below), with Gavin Drake of Mindspan Global, he talked about 5 psychological needs that can help employees navigate the challenging environment that we find ourselves in currently. It’s these five psychological needs that we discuss in the context of managing employees:

Control

Most people like to think that they’re in control of their lives and that achieving this is a reflection of success. Unfortunately, the default is to think that this extends to the world around us too. The problem with this way of thinking is that when things happen that we can’t control, it makes us feel as though the world is unraveling, and if we allow these thoughts to embed in our mind then it can create a great deal of unnecessary stress. So instead of focussing on what can’t be controlled and getting upset about it – things such as lockdown and a global pandemic. In situations like this, it’s how you respond – the need for control can be met by adapting and changing things that you do have control over, like your behaviour, your attitude, and your thoughts.

Hope

Hope is something that we need more than we realise and it’s not an airy-fairy feeling. Hope is having something to look forward to, a sense that the future will hold something better. The news pushes so many negative stories daily. It’s hard to filter that out and find hope. But as a business owner or manager, it is possible to provide that hope to employees. It could be something as simple as the assurance that you won’t be cutting salaries or making redundancies in the next 6 months. Or it could be a new project involving new technology that’s worth getting excited about.

Connection

Many people enjoy working in an office environment because of the social aspect of getting to see and interact with colleagues on a daily basis. Working from home may have been necessary but connecting on Zoom for meetings isn’t quite the same as being in the same room as one another. You can help employees by scheduling informal contacts. A phone call just to chat about anything really, will make them feel connected again.

Purpose

When the world around us is full of stress, it may make us question our purpose. Managers can help employees retain a sense of purpose by emphasising the value they bring to the company and showing appreciation for the work that they do.

Understanding

Working from home for much of last year has been challenging in many different ways. For families, it’s been stressful having everyone confined to a small space. For people living alone, it’s been an incredibly lonely time. Companies that show empathy and understanding help their employees to be more productive and feel more purposeful despite the challenging environment that they find themselves in. Understanding can go a long way to helping reduce stress for employees.

These are really helpful keys for motivating employees. You can see the full webinar where Gavin talks in more detail about these points below, or you can follow this link to see it on YouTube: Gavin Drake – Sustaining Peak Performance. And if you have any questions or would like to discuss anything furtehr then feel free to contact us.

Sustaining Peak Performance During a Pandemic – Gavin Drake

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