The pandemic changed how teams operate on a massive scale in 2020. It has influenced the way we work and where we work. Without any doubts, working from home without the daily commute to the office has multiple implications over our lives. And not only in the summer, when it’s all green and sunny, but especially during the gloomy, cold winter season.
Whether you’re working from home or are back in an office, there’s a critical productivity element you may be overlooking: the lighting. In prior installments of this series, I talked about how exposure to lifestyle or environmental factors such as mental health resources, music, indoor plants, exercise, and natural caffeine can elevate your performance.
The Coronavirus pandemic has left people exhausted and stressed. This trickles into the lives of customers and reflects how people interact with customer service and sales teams. What’s more, your business might have noticed a spike in customer calls for help this year.
For almost a year we are going through what psychologists call collective trauma, which makes us live in fear and uncertainty. Hundreds of thousands of people lost someone they loved, millions got sick, and even more lost their job. The majority of those who are lucky enough to still be here and have a job are most probably working from home, doing the same thing every day, locked between four walls, with the same people. All of these are taking a significant toll on their psychical stability and are generating many mental health issues.
We’ve all heard the phrase positive vibes only. To be honest, it drives me nuts. It’s something meant to reinforce the idea that you should focus on all the good things that are happening instead of dwelling on the bad. Which is good in theory, if you don’t amplify it out of control. However, from a certain point on, it will turn into an ugly monster, also known as toxic positivity.
You’re sitting at your desk. The phone rings and breaks your concentration. When you pick it up, you notice it’s nearly lunchtime, and you’ve been working for a few hours, without distractions. While getting up from the chair, your legs feel completely numb. You take stock of the project on your screen and realize you’re almost done. At a quick glance, you also realize that it’s done well 😀 Congratulations, you’ve just experienced the flow state!
If you ask 10 different people to define the year that’s coming to an end tomorrow, you’ll get 10 different answers. Same if you ask 1000. Because 2020 was tough, bumpy, and full of unpredictability in all possible areas. And we can all agree that it has forever changed the way we work and interact, both in doing business and in our private lives.
Company values are the core set of principles that your company stands by and promotes. Some might think these are just a bunch of nice-sounding slogans or a marketing stunt meant to attract customers. But when you stand by your values and place them at the core of your business, they can act as a guide for your employees in those unpredictable situations that aren’t mapped by your set of procedures.
Procedures are a well-established set of rules that let people know how they should behave in certain situations. These are in place to make the workflow predictable, the operations quicker, and the overall business more effective. However, you can’t possibly have rules for any possible situation, and you must make sure that your employees make the best decisions in those unpredictable situations. Therefore, both values and procedures are important for the prosperity of your business.
Do you have a coworker who always seems to have their headphones in, tapping along with the beat or mouthing the lyrics? Maybe you are that coworker who can’t get through the day without your favorite playlists. Have you ever thought about why music is so important to your workday, whether you’re only listening to a few songs or a whole opera?
When the first wave of COVID-19 forced the world into lockdown, business leaders scrambled to pivot out of necessity. Overnight, they had to make financial adjustments and staffing decisions to keep the business afloat. They had to reassure stakeholders, hone their public message, and implement health and safety measures. If being a great leader was difficult before, now it has become even tougher.