Communication tips to help ease anxiety in during COVID-19

04 Oct 2020

As governments move to ease measures during the COVID-19 pandemic for businesses, managers now have to plan and communicate the next moves for their team members and customers.  

From working in the office to shifting to the home and now, back to the office again? There might be some confusion as employees have to rearrange their home and work life, as well as workflow to align with company and government measures.

Here are some tips managers can follow to ensure the trust is established and safety is adhered to.

Time your communication

Did the government announce loosening safe distancing measures for businesses? If so, the HR team should discuss with managers if changes will be made to operations.

By getting into action early and often, HR will be able to come up with official announcements to engage employees faster, minimise confusion and disruption to workflow.

Sending a clear message and opening channels for feedback and responses can allow the staff to manage their anxiety and build trust in the management.

Use the right words

Simplifying the message is key to sending the right message. Avoid using jargon and keep the announcements short and precise. Bullet points and bolding the fonts are great ways to highlight key points.

If you are seeking a specific action, be clear on what you require employees to do and by when.

Check with the employees if the message has been well-received or if a large group of them are unsure.

Give employees the big picture

When will this new arrangement last? Who is involved, and who is not?

Managers tend to say less when communicating to avoid creating false hopes or information to the staff. However, this can cause messages to become truncated.

Leaders can open up the floor for discussion and have an open, honest conversation to ease the employees' anxiety, especially if there are complex issues at hand.

By providing a framework, the company can show its commitment to getting everybody on the same page and continue moving on with its business goals.

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