A friend of mine this week received a package from her head office. As a company they are a multinational with around 50% of staff permanently home working.
The package contained a branded cup featuring safety advice, some sterilising wipes for hand and computer hygiene and chocolate for...well, I guess for when it just all feels too much.
The message intention was, regardless of where you work we want you to stay safe, we’re thinking of you. The intention is for employees to remember to adopt safe working practice whether at home, or in the office.
Creating behaviour change that is consistent and cohesive amongst your team can help to create harmony, reduce conflict and bring about a sense of ‘we’re all in this together’.
If you’re managing a team, then asking for sustained behavioural change needs to be not only delivered decisively but managed consistently, and perhaps most importantly - led by example
Difficulties can arise when individuals either feel a sense of inequality or can’t see the benefits from a prescribed change.
It can be as simple as a colleague who makes other team members a cup of coffee. The traditional tea run is no longer advised, but it’s not uncommon for people to start relaxing back into old habits. This behaviour can make other colleagues feel uncomfortable, not knowing how to politely refuse the drink but also concerned about what other rules this person has allowed to relax.
Giving useful feedback about the benefits of our changed actions is an important factor in maintaining the behavioural change we’re looking to see in others. And making sure you check in with colleagues every week is vital going forward.
Understanding how they’re feeling week by week can help you manage their productivity and sense of wellbeing. It can also ensure that you make decisions that are balanced against your team’s real needs and worries.
Nothing makes people feel like we really are all in this together, than being heard. You can download our guide to conducting 5 minute check in chats with your team here. If conflict is already at an escalated stage in your workplace, take a listen to this week’s podcast with Jane Gunn, and expert in conflict resolution.