A recent HBR article explained that the lack of social interactions can make an organisation’s corporate culture feel cold and distant, turning it into a liability if left neglected. Here’s how to keep that culture alive by making it a leadership priority
1 Enhance freedom of expression
David Kessler, a grief expert, said in a recent interview that everyone in the workplace is currently experiencing grief. “The loss of normalcy; the fear of economic toll; the loss of connection… We are not used to this kind of collective grief in the air.”
Uncertainty triggers different feelings amongst team members. It is essential to give employees the freedom to express emotions while balancing home and work life. An understanding leader promotes stronger collaboration, less stress, and greater morale for a more unified company culture.
2 Create a sense of community
As people are accustomed to working together, there can be many different reactions to the new environment. Some members quickly adapt, while others do not. It’s crucial to re-evaluate everyone’s needs and prioritise inclusivity, according to a McKinsey study. Consider how you introduce someone new to the team, share company communications, or recognise and award top performers. Your approach will help reinforce the company’s culture.
3 Refresh communication methods
Communication is key to ensuring that remote workers do not feel disconnected or isolated. Jonathan Steiman, the founder of Peak Support, suggests using the following four strategies: first, leverage technology tools to establish viable communication channels .Second, managers check in one-on-one with members whenever possible. Third, leaders should welcome feedback by maintaining a virtual open door. And fourth, managers ought to meet all new hires to establish a connection.
4 The role of a leader
Corporate culture will remain dormant if leaders do not demonstrate their commitment to the company and their teams by accommodating employees. Start reigniting core values by talking about what the company stands for and how everyone drives those goals.
Cultures that align with the vision, purpose, and goals of an organisation do not have to disappear as teams move remotely. There is an opportunity to be a part of an evolving workforce, but there needs to be intention to make that happen.