Coping with Coronavirus at work – how to manage wellbeing for you and your team in uncertain times
Any disruption to the usual routine, whether work or personal, can put us on edge. The current Coronavirus situation is changing on almost an hourly basis and businesses are making some drastic changes to normal working practices. This can be unnerving and can create some distinct challenges for those not used to working from home on a regular basis, and for leaders managing teams remotely.
Tips from our experts
To help you navigate through these unusual times we have pulled together advice and tools gathered from our network of experts and wider specialists. This will give you the best chance of coming out the other side, unscathed and intact, both physically and mentally.
Toolkit from City Mental Health Alliance
City Mental Health Alliance (UK) have put together a useful tool kit with tips on how to support colleagues to stay mentally healthy in unusual working conditions. Top tips include:
- Make sure colleagues are aware of resources for supporting mental health and wellbeing like your Employee Assistance Program
- Regularly communicate with employees on what measures are being put in place to protect and support them, and how this will impact their role
- Set clear expectations of working hours, and drill home that employees are not expected to stay logged in or check emails after the end of the working day.
Daily updates from Acas
Positive Group digital programme
Coping with coronavirus at work can trigger high levels of stress and anxiety in employees. An organisation which maintains a calm, proactive and positive approach will help allay any fears and promote a composed response. In response to requests from their partners, Positive Group have produced a micro ‘Managing you Mind’ digital programme to help organisations mitigate the impact of uncertainty for their people. Delivered by psychologists, it has been devised to help manage any intrusive worries or thoughts and cultivate a positive and protective mindset.
A range of toolkits & advice for employers from the CIPD
The CIPD are providing updated advice, resources and guidance to support employers and people professionals in their response to the virus. This includes guides, posters, support materials, fact sheets and resources.
Mental Health tips from Mind
Mind is a great resource for tips on managing mental health for you and your colleagues. Tips include:
- Make plans to video chat with people or groups you’d normally see in person
- Find some chatty, positive podcasts to listen to if your home feels too quiet
- Try to follow your ordinary routine as much as possible. Get up at the same time as normal, follow your usual morning routines, and go to bed at your usual time.
More tips are available here.
Eating healthy and nutritious food should form part of your working from home routine. Taking a break for lunch which is high in protein and good fats and low in sugar can help boost your productivity and prevent an afternoon slump. By choosing a well balanced diet, full of whole foods, fruit and veg you can help boost your immunity too. For more tips on healthy eating and immunity boosting diets, check out resources such as Get Raw Energy.
A CEO’s perspective on coping with Coronavirus at work
Chris Cummings, CEO of Sonas Group, the company behind the Wellbeing @ Work Events, has a unique perspective as a leader running a completely remote office.
“Covid-19 brings the world of work some unique challenges and maintaining good wellbeing and mental health is key in these uncertain times. Healthy habits, eating well, following a productive routine and knowing when to take a break are all important, and so is keeping anxiety in check.
Push notifications, breaking news alerts and social media updates make it difficult to unplug from current news and can serve as an unhelpful distraction or a trigger. Of course, it’s important to stay informed but being confronted with a barrage of scary headlines is not going to help with health anxiety. Creating healthy news habits would be my one top tip. By limiting the frequency of news checking (whether online, TV, radio) to a set time, choosing just one trusted news outlet for your phone and changing your notification settings, you’ll probably find you’ll feel much calmer and more positive.
Flexible and homeworking can be a positive experience. Technology has enabled remote working to be achievable but make sure you are regularly checking in with your team. Social interactions, relationships and conversation are all very powerful and as humans we need regular connection, so stay in touch and interact.
Finally, as an events’ company that has been significantly impacted by recent developments, I am heartened by the flexibility and kindness shown by providers, partners and colleagues. Every business will be impacted by this and the compassion and understanding shown by so many people has renewed my faith in kindness across humanity. It is going to be challenging times for us all, but I truly believe that by working together, we will get through this period stronger. Let’s work collaboratively and find innovation that can help us navigate these short term issues.”
For advice, insights and more on workplace wellbeing, register your interest for our Wellbeing @ Work Event near you.