Embracing innovation through digitization and automation has become the buzzword for any business to flourish, especially in the current dynamic times. In the wake of the pandemic, business continuity has been immensely impacted across industries. One of the key industries in the current situation to be highlighted is the e-commerce sector which has undergone unprecedented and accelerated growth, especially the companies operating in essential services like medicine, grocery, household essentials. Rising consumer demand in tempo with a strong growth trajectory leading to the need for more talent in the sector. The workforce currently in demand is one that is agile, flexible, and adaptable. There is a clear emergence of many adjacent skillsets which shall continue to be in demand into the foreseeable future.
Small acts of kindness can go a long way
This is a time when employees are looking at companies for more – companies need to showcase kindness with a sense of social responsibility. As per studies, 71% of business leaders believe that a high level of employee engagement is a top factor in bringing in new business. It's fair to say that inclusivity is a key part of employee wellbeing, so whether it's a one-off event or an ongoing campaign, it's really important to make sure everyone – at all levels – can get involved with the company's engagement initiatives. Random acts of kindness are just a tiny part of positive company culture. And positive company culture is essential to success, retention, and productivity.
Unleash the employee resource group
The employee-led groups that promote an inclusive and diverse workplace, aligned with the goal of the organization, are called an Employee Resource Group. Such groups should be shouldering the task of organically bringing people together; so as to drive a strong sense of group belonging and build strong social bonds. There can be multiple groups created based on shared interests or areas of common collaboration. These groups can be further extrapolated to different committees like “Fun committee”, “Meme Committee”, “Festival Committee” etc. for driving the organization's engagement interventions.
Celebrating the accomplishments of the employees has become more important than ever. We cannot deny that most organizations have highly sophisticated rewards and recognition programs. Some recent employee surveys have uncovered that the most valued form of recognition is often the one that's most personal and simple. Some innovative ideas to celebrate with your remote employees can be:
Inviting the leaders of the organizations over a team video call and tout the accomplishment of the team
- Sending across goodies with a handwritten thank you note, addressing and letting their family how much he/she is appreciated and how much they mean to the organization
- Treating the employee to celebrate their accomplishment by sending them food from a rave-reviewed restaurant in their neighborhood or by sending them a product from the in-house e-commerce platform itself
Virtual water cooler moments
People working remotely often miss the random catch-ups in the reception, hallways, cafeteria, and restroom. Leaders worry that this may affect their team's camaraderie and relationships with colleagues across the organization. A one-off team-building event is not always the solution. With virtual watercooler practices in place, employees get the chance to build community and feel like they're all part of the same team. They don't feel so alone, which is especially important when so many people are experiencing social isolation. Leaders should also bake in time for personal, non-work-related conversations which will not only bring the teammates closer but also give them a chance to air any stress that they might be carrying.
Make time for fun
Teams that laugh together grow closer together, therefore it is important for an organization to infuse a little fun. Every now and then meetings should be conducted where people just have fun, have virtual parties, and play games.
Here are a few ways in which some fun can be injected into the workday.
- Virtual cheers events or virtually hosted game events
- Inviting an artist to perform virtually for the employees
- Taking Bingo, the game of Pictionary, or Trivia Night online
While the situation outside remains grim and scary, the best way forward is to remain optimistic and inject the same into the team's morale. Once the dust of the pandemic settles down, a lot of things may return to their old habits, but there shall be a lot of learnings and best practices we would have bagged. Customers who have found value and satisfaction with their online experiences will persist with their online consumption. In the long-term, this will be the inflection point for digital transformation across sectors.