Useful tips to manage back to work anxiety faced by employees

We are nearing an unlock, and most companies have partly already resumed operations and are bringing back employees to work staggeringly. While offices are adopting new methods to ensure safety at work, choosing ways to ease employees should also be part of your plan. Work from home has predominantly set in a different routine, and getting back to work can be stressful unless you have followed a strict working pattern even while at home.

Researchers from Weber Shandwick and KRC state that about 45% of employees fear returning to work before it’s safe, owing to the ongoing situation. Thus, tackling employees’ mental and emotional health becomes vital for addressing the overall wellbeing of the organization. While this re-entry is the need of the hour, managers must relieve workspace anxiety to maximize employees’ productivity and curb disengagement. Ways to manage employee anxiety:

Equip managers to train and hold the team together effectively.

Managers should be prepared and familiarized with the fundamental triggers of anxiety and emotional discomfort as they will play a vital role in resolving employee wellbeing. They can hold team meetings and one-to-one meetings with employees to solve uncertainties and resolve issues and questions in real-time. Managers are the bridge between management and employees, and they shoulder more significant responsibilities to ensure employees have a smooth transition into the new normal.

Effective Communication

To begin with, keep your team in the know as that can help them understand the impact COVID-19 has on the company and pave new ways to prepare and address any grievances. Constantly brief your employees about workspace policies and safety measures to remove any vagueness and impart confidence. Frequent updates and clarifying doubts can open a two-way conversation between the management and the employees, causing the transition to be as smooth as possible.

Be flexible and allow your team to breathe.

While the lockdown has been a significant push to execute work-from-home policies, nothing supersedes the social connection and the joys of achieving goals. Most employees complained of undergoing insecurities and anxieties while working remotely, which hindered their productivity and motivation. While we are gearing up to unlock, employees should be allowed to make the re-entry leap in a staggered manner. It is essential to reevaluate workplace policies and decide the immediacy at which the functions should resume work. You can choose to work on alternate days, or look at rotational shifts; choose what best suits your company.

One-on-one feedback sessions

Several employees are possibly going to experience a high level of anxiety due to their managers’ lack of feedback. Routine one-on-one feedback sessions between superiors and subordinates is an effective mechanism to overcome stress. It reassures employees that they are on the right track and empowers them to overcome their weaknesses. Such light-hearted feedback sessions encourage employees to stay focused on their goals and eliminate anxiety.

Team building should be the need of the hour.

Every team faces challenges of sorts, however when every individual collaborates to achieve common goals, stress can be eliminated, and goals can be ticked off with ease. Team building promotes an influential culture in the organization and productively resolves conflicts.


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