We’ve seen the news, our headlines are bombarded with the latest COVID-19 updates. It’s forcing many companies to close their doors and shifting others into a work from home anomaly. So, to help you maintain a pulse on your company culture during this time of uncertainty, we’ve pulled out the tips to keep your newly-founded remote team going strong.
Show Up & Show Out
As you and your team drive forward through this chaos, it’s crucially important to stay in constant communication. Many remote workers worry about managerial access during these uncertain times. Keep those conversations thriving with daily company check-ins or at the very least a morning rendezvous with your immediate team. Think of this time as physical distancing rather than the social distancing we’re being preached to follow.
“Our team has implemented 15-minute informal video calls at the beginning and end of each day to combat a decline in overall collaboration and lack of socialization while working remotely. We're also doing "house tours" on these video calls, for those of us who are comfortable, just to have some fun and share more about ourselves!” - Brittany Frank | Outcomes and Graduate Success Coordinator at DevMountain
Go to lunch, online & on-time
Yes! You can still grab a quick bite with your favorite co-workers. Order in or whip something tasty up in your kitchen, that cathartic lunchtime relief is still important in our remote lives. Scheduling a weekly lunch with your favorites or maybe even a top candidate can help differentiate between “work time” and “downtime.” Though it may be awkward to down that Shawarma or cold pizza in front of others, doing this helps employees relax and curates meaningful social interaction. No matter what snack you choose, keep the fellowship alive.
“We’re currently all on a “lunch break” together via Zoom. My gaming discord also just set up a #WFH open voice channel so people can hop in and out to chat whenever they’re feeling lonely” -YiYi | Marketing at Clutch Talent
Virtual Happy Hours
Probably our second favorite part of the day, right? The after-work drink to take the edge off. You can still rally with your team at the end of the day, celebrate a holiday like we did this week to toast to Passover or throw one back for coworker’s birthday. Most of us have a boozy delight we can whip up quickly. Pour it up, conjure up a video chat and keep your team laughing while the world crumbles around us. Not a drinker? Share fun non-alcoholic drink recipes ahead of time and you can still scream cheers together straight into the webcam.
Stretch out the stress
We’re seeing folks take to online workouts and exercises by the masses. Get a group together and stretch out all these “corona-woes” with a nice yoga session, a barre routine or really any other thing that will keep you healthy and take your mind off the term “pandemic.” Other options exist like Class Pass which is a regular offering for our team or other services like Beachbody on Demand which you can offer your team to keep heart rates high and to burn off that box of Girl Scout Cookies we’ve all seemingly managed to binge.
Throw in some perks
We know the financial conversation is a little tough right now, but if your company can afford some sort of package, coming up with some remote perks is a great way to keep your team engaged and striving to do their best. Try setting some goals who shared the most company content this week or who had the highest sales? Send the winner a nice bottle of wine or an Amazon gift card and keep your remote team putting their heads in the game.
“We use Zestful for perks and rewards, we match 50 dollars each month and have encouraged employees to seek subscriptions to apps like Calm and Headspace - if that’s not a feasible long term solution I would recommend offering it short term for one month or two. ”
- Charmagne Gomes | Head of People at Informed.co
Game, Set, Match!
Speaking of heads in the game, why not try just that? Here at Joonko, we’ve been coming up with all sorts of ways to keep the team entertained. We’ve played games like Kahoot! Quizzing one another on fun facts and surprising details, which was a moment of camaraderie with some of the people we love most!
“We wanted to maintain the fun we all have together in the office, but from home. So, in addition to games, we still try to meet every day, have fun and keep that Joonko spirit alive.”
- Tom Ketter | Software Engineer at Joonko 🚀
Create a relief fund
Let’s get serious for a moment. We’re all going through some sort of struggle right now, whether that’s mentally, physically or financially, this virus has brought on so much more than distancing ourselves and heavy sanitation. If it’s accessible, take saved revenue and let your employees know it’s there should they need any vital necessities (no one knows where the toilet paper is). Having a relief fund in place can give your remote employees a sense of extended security that won’t cost the company a fortune.
#NowWatching & #NowListening
As we take to our online communication tools, set up a #channel on Slack or maybe a company group on Facebook to share show recommendations or music. If there’s anything that will take your mind off things it’s a good drama or a fresh beat. If you truly believe Carol Baskin did it and Joe Exotic was an unconventional businessman, share your pop culture knowledge with your team.
We could all use a friend through this, so why not open up a little bit? Consider hosting a recurring virtual support group just to talk through the pains. We’re all having to shift our way of thinking and adapt to new changes, that’s not easy for everyone. Establishing an open forum to talk about the #SundayScaries or the monotony of staying cooped up inside will give your team an outlet to express themselves and maybe feel just a little less isolated.
Flex the schedule and throw in some training
Now is a great time to consider offering flex-time, for so many reasons, but also because this gives your team an opportunity to grow themselves on their own time. There are so many resources available for professional development. Take a look at Google Garage, Udemy or Coursera for great online courses taking skillsets to new heights. If an employee is interested in growing themselves, give them the time to do so.
So there you have it. There’s no need to let COVID-19 kill your team spirit. As we navigate the uncertainty, little tips and tricks like these are sure to keep a smile on your employees face. Got some things you think we should add to the list? Leave us a note in the comments.
Stay safe and be well, friends.
To learn more about how we can help your organization reach its D&I goals, visit www.joonko.co or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.