04 Jun Coming back from Furlough and what you can do to ease the process
It’s been a tough year for everyone. No matter your life or work situation, each of us has been tested, burdened and have struggled through the last 12 months. Now, many members of your team will be coming back from furlough, some for the first time since March 2020. Each person will handle this transition differently, and for some, it won’t be easy. That is why it’s not only important to focus on your team as a whole, but the individuals who fall within it.
At Selling Savvy, we have taken a look at how these individuals might be feeling, how you can prepare for these feelings and how together, we can support each other through this process.
If you want to learn more about what has changed for the events industry, before reading on, check out our last blog ‘Welcome back to Sales’.
Feeling 1: Overwhelmed
It’s a heavy feeling — quite literally. It’s a feeling that weighs you down through your fears and anxieties. Coming back from Furlough, not only are your employees going to be worried about their roles changing and adapting, but the entire industry has transformed as well. So how are we as employers going to ensure they are confident, comfortable & ready to be back at work? It all starts with some good old fashion support.
You, as hospitality and events professionals who have kept active and present in the industry throughout the pandemic, are going to be a key source of information for your team on the state of the industry. It is important to share this information with them to help them better settle into this new environment.
It is also essential to put a plan in place for helping them start to work again. This may be as small as providing a link to a google doc of passwords or as detailed as helping them manage their time and workload.
How are you going to do all this we hear you ask? The most crucial bit of information we can share with you is communication. Open, one-to-one conversations with all team members returning from furlough. Speak about their worries, fears and anxieties will help you understand where they need the most support and make them feel comfortable and heard. Regular check-ins, additional one-to-ones and encouraging the team to support one another will start to lift the feeling of being overwhelmed from their shoulders.
Feeling 2: Exhausted
Think about it… For most of the last year we have been asked to confine to our homes, or at most, pop out for a short exercise and head back home. Also, for those not working, many have not had the opportunity to stimulate their brains!
In addition to a slightly more social lifestyle, heading back to a 5-day work week when coming back from furlough, getting up earlier and adding in a two-way commute, your team members energy will deplete very quickly.
It is important to remember that these individuals are not ‘lazy’. They just need the time to settle into this new everyday environment. Give them time and be understanding. With your support, you will be surprised at how quickly they adapt and get back to that ‘pre-Covid’ productivity.
Feeling 3: Tension
As we mentioned, everyone has gone through different situations during this pandemic. It is important to grasp how your employees are feeling through the one-to-ones that we mentioned before and think about how these feelings will affect the team as a whole.
This is especially important if you have staff that have been working throughout the pandemic, and some that haven’t. It should be expected that there will be tension in this space created by emotions like jealously, fear, anger and even imposter syndrome with those returning to work.
Make sure to take the time to re-align everyone on your team, even you! To have a successful turnaround from the pandemic, your team will need to work together more than ever to ensure your guests and clients feel safe.
As we mentioned earlier in this blog, communication will be a crucial and fundamental element to your team’s success during this time. Ensure your door is always open, that your team knows they can confide in you and that you can be relied on no matter how they are feeling. Be empathetic and recognise that not just in your organisation, but across the industry and the world we have each had our own experiences with this pandemic.
We know it’s going to be hard to support those team members coming back from furlough on your own, so if there is anything else the team at Selling Savvy can help you with from recourses to courses, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 07746 843416.
Also check out some of our other blogs that you may find helpful:
Welcome Back To Sales: How Has The Event Industry Changed Over The Last Year?
Content written by Selling Savvy and blog post written by Catrina Pengelley of the Nerdy Hotelier