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Three Ways to Help People #WorkSmart During COVID-19 and Beyond

#1 Embrace New Ways of Working

Leverage smart tools and tech which level the playing field for all workers –not just those who were equipped to work remotely anyway.

Enable collaboration but also ensure data security and privacy by explaining to workers that everyone is responsible for protecting data while initiating practices and procedures that will strengthen data security within a business.

Focus on output, not online presenteeism. Too much emphasis is placed on ‘being seen’ as a proxy for how committed an online worker is to an organization. Ensure clear output targets are set as the measure, rather than being hung-up on specific hours.

Create structure for remote teams via scheduled meetings and informal check-ins, boosting engagement as workers will feel included and clearly understand the value of their daily output.

Find online expressions for your culture. Create a virtual water cooler (e.g. culturally dedicated Slack channels) where employees can run into each other and play out their personal and human sides.

Think long-term. The reaction to COVID-19 will leave behind a legacy on which to build a way of working closer to the needs of people, proving that we are capable of overcoming physical barriers.

Think of remote work as not a challenge to overcome but a business advantage to achieve. By not tying work to a physical location we democratize opportunity and open-up a world of new possibilities.

#2 Prioritize Strong Leadership

Remember prepared and responsible leadership is critical to react promptly and competently in a time of crisis.

Lead by example. Leaders should be visible in online tools and channels, communicating proactively and engaging in timely conversations where they are happening.

Trust teams to be more autonomous but with processes, responsibilities and clearly defined roles to measure results and readjust behavior.

Consider how new ways of working and getting work done can contribute to industry transformation, redesigning business models and diversifying supply chains and markets that will benefit the business in the long-term

Remember a good contingency plan is just the start of creating the basis necessary to seize the opportunities to rethink your company and its leadership in a context of great transformation imposed by the crisis.

#3 Stay Focused on Reskilling and Upskilling

Help people learn, apply and adapt to new roles and new ways of working.

Get ready for more training to move digital. Webinars and online tutorials “solve” the theme of copresence. Quizzes and tests allow companies to verify learning and keep the engagement curve high.

Create a culture that enables people to nurture their learnability and continually update their skills. The Skills Revolution we predicted is here and it’s happening now, ensuring people re-skill and upskill is how companies will stay competitive and people will be motivated and engaged, bringing value for the long-term.