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While many business leaders have been arguing that ‘change is the new normal’ for some time, 2020 taught us all that there are different degrees of change. Even the most agile businesses struggled to respond to the impact of the pandemic. 
Many have had to update systems and processes to support remote working, and to change their customer service ethos entirely to digitally transform sales. Employees have had to learn what it means to work from home or another remote location and have been living with little job security for a long time. 
As we all start to look forward to a post-coronavirus workplace, company owners and leaders must be ready to implement unprecedented organisational changes. 
Your team will look to you for guidance and inspiration. To help you prepare, here’s a four-step process: 
1. recognise the changes in the broader business environment 
2. develop the necessary adjustments for your company's needs 
3. train your employees on how to implement the appropriate changes 
4. listen to your employees and make appropriate adjustments to win their support. 
Motivating your employees 
You will need to engage and motivate your team every step of the way. To maintain good employee relations and productivity it is important that everyone feels part of the process rather than victims of it. Here are some of the ways you can make a difference. 
Understand your staff – many employees are motivated by job satisfaction. This might not simply be about their earning potential; respect, recognition, and career progression are also important. By understanding the personal goals of your employees and aligning these with the goals of your business, you can work together. Encouraging training and personal development, for example, can benefit your business because your team will have more skills and can be more productive. 
Creating a positive environmentpositivity can motivate people, support their mental health, and improve productivity. It’s important to make sure that the working environment, recognition, salary, and bonuses are seen as ways in which you recognise and reward your employees. You can also celebrate achievements and encourage each team member to develop as a highly motivated, positive contributor. 
Empowerment and risk taking – a certain amount of ‘positive risk’ can give your team the confidence to make non-critical decisions and to see actions through. This creates a more dynamic workplace, although providing training so that everyone knows when to act and when to ask for management approval is essential. For example, your customer services team could be empowered to give a full refund or replacement for purchases below a certain value. This will make them feel respected and trusted, it will save a lot of time, and improve customer satisfaction. 
Work as partners – when your employees feel like partners, they will care more about what they do and work harder to achieve good results. You can start by explaining how your business is run to help them feel included. Try running a staff suggestion scheme; you might be surprised how some simple changes could improve customer service or products. As long as you make it clear what employees can and can’t change, why not include them in some important decisions to make sure they feel valued? 
If you would like support to reengage with your team as they return to a post-coronavirus workplace please get in touch
Until next time ... 
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