During Any Stressful Time, Be Sure To Let Team Members And Clients Know “We’ve Got Your Back.”
We’re in this together, and we are in this differently.
Together, we transitioned to a remote work environment and began communicating via the cloud, tapping into video tools like Zoom. Together, we maintained a culture of caring, recognizing that no one had the answers to questions like “When will COVID-19 be over?” We focused on customers—internal and external. People are the center of our business, and managing risk is what we do. So, we continued serving clients as a cohesive team, in spite of the uncertainty. Keeping our brand promise, our helpful, optimistic messaging never stopped. Together, we served as a resilient resource for each other and our clients.
Yet, we are in this differently. Some households juggled e-school and remote work, realizing that there wasn’t enough bandwidth in the house for the entire family to go virtual. Other individuals dealt with the isolation of social distancing alone at home. Those suffering from underlying health issues were worried about an increased risk of contracting COVID-19. And depending on how you consume the news media, the 24/7 reel might have been simply too much to handle.
Let’s face it, we all have a breaking point.
At Deeley, we understand the importance of maintaining mental health and resilience during uncertain times—and all the time, actually. Human Resources plays a critical role, ensuring that team members understand benefits like telehealth and access to mental health services. Employee morale is important to us every day, and it’s a significant priority during incredibly stressful times like these. But we also see the tough times as an opportunity to grow, and that’s what our leadership team chose to do, setting the tone for how our organization would manage during a crisis.
Because of business continuity planning (see page 4), we could provide our team members with the technology and systems required to work from home. This allowed staff to continue performing job duties. The execution wasn’t perfect by any means. Because of a shortage of laptops, some employees loaded desktops and monitor stands into their vehicles to set up a home office. Others didn’t have adequate internet access at home, so we flexed to create a safer workplace in our office so they could continue their roles. Our operations team constantly evaluated processes and digital tools, and we pivoted when necessary. (Read more about how our clients adapted on page 6.)
We rolled out Zoom for our client meetings, our all-agency virtual meetings, and even a virtual happy hour. Transitioning to Microsoft Teams was a key step in keeping our people connected and celebrating together—sharing videos from home and photos of kids and pets was a way to focus on the bright side of quarantine. It was important to not lose touch with what makes Deeley unique—our people.
Every team member has variables at home and in their personal lives that impact the way they can handle unexpected crises. We knew we simply needed to care about each other. We tuned into each other’s needs, understanding that we have different vulnerabilities that need to be respected. Also, we were open about discussing what felt really hard during this stressful time. Leadership conducted frequent quality-of-life check-in surveys with team members.
We focused on simply being there for our people and letting them know that feeling overwhelmed or needing help is OK.
Focused on Family.
We decided to wait extra weeks, before the 2019–20 schoolyear ended, to start transitioning employees back into the office. This allowed parents to support their children’s e-learning while working remotely.
While a challenging juggle, we are proud of the way our team members handled the situation. We support families with mental health resources, including access to telehealth services so they can safely attend doctors’ appointments. And to educate our people about opportunities, we created a biweekly newsletter. Everyone here is eligible for mental health services through our Employee Assistance Program, and we put that information in front of them early and often.
As we (hopefully) head out of this pandemic, we can say with confidence that our culture is even stronger, and our team is even more connected. We are here for each other and for our clients. And we can be sure that no matter what, we will navigate treacherous waters successfully. Together, we are at the helm.