NEW YORK, (July 22, 2020) – Shelley Tanner, SanovaWorks CEO/President
The effects of COVID-19 are still manifesting in US households, communities, and markets. The workforce is adjusting to furlough, dismissal, and/or remote worker life. These effects are likely to continue through 2020, and beyond. The long term effects of COVID-19 on the mental health of practitioners and support staff are now part of the conversation and discussion of how we move forward.
Whether you are on furlough, updating your resume, or comfortable and confident in your current role, communication in the age of COVID-19 looks different than anytime in our history. We are writing the book on how to manage business during a pandemic. The age of COVID and guidelines about safe distancing certainly have changed work life for many people, not only in the US, but across the globe as well. With adjustments to how we “show-up” for work, many companies have now transitioned to operating remotely. New systems and processes are being created to accommodate remote work and establish safe distancing and protection guidelines.
Effective communication during a global pandemic
Step one for effectively communicating during a global pandemic, make sure you have a good internet provider and a strong connection because you are going to need it. We rely on video conferencing and bandwidth for effective communication more than ever now. If you have connection problems, it’s time to fix them.
Follow up is essential
Don’t forget to follow up after an interview, a meeting, or a chance encounter with someone in your network. Writing a personal note is essential to remind them of the conversation, to stay at the top of their mind and to stand out from the crowd. You can even go a step further than an email communication with a personal note on a unique one of a kind card. Who does that anymore? You will certainly get someone’s attention with something chosen especially for them.
When and how
If you are adapting to a remote work life during the pandemic, then you need to know the two most important aspects of communication. Working remotely requires clear communication and expectations. Setting up guidelines for when and how to communicate is important.
Signe Philstrand explains, “It’s not productive to be bombarded with IMs and emails throughout the day, and radio silence can leave you wondering if anything is getting accomplished. Set up a clear plan for when you expect to hear from your staff, or colleagues – for instance, a 15-minute touch-base call every morning, emails returned within 24-hours, or maybe a daily end-of-day report from your staff. Pick the ways that your team will communicate and get everyone on the same tools. You don’t want to have to check numerous places for messages. Decide what is communicated by each. Short, occasional messages are best for IMs, while longer messages can be via email – while longer yet should be done in a conversation by video chat.
As we all make the necessary adjustments to type, frequency, and tools, we should remember, that clear communication is the most effective communication. And don’t forget sincerity and a personal touch go a long way.