Natural Disaster near or far extends to the workplace!
With the events of recent years, natural and not so natural disasters have brought concern over many of us in the workplace. Today is no exception. From the employee who has property or perhaps even friends or family an event like what is happening in Japan today can bring about quite an impact on productivity. Especially as it reaches closer to home with warnings. Emotional trauma can be serious and should be a consideration even if your business is thousands of miles from the epicenter of such a crisis. Communication is key to keep your workforce focused while feeling supported. Remembering that not nearly all responsibilities are listed in a job description here are some ideas on what you can be doing to provide support while at work.
Some feasible options for support include:
- Access to an EAP (Employee Assistance Program)
- Identifying someone on site who will have information and be available as a resource to employees
- Providing additional break times or access to phones for necessary communications to ease concern
- Offering a supportive event where employees can volunteer to get involved to support or provide assistance to those affected
Remember the more organized and prepared management is to respond and communicate the more effective the communication will be at alleviating business disruption. Clearly, it is unavoidable as care and concern are natural responses but never under-estimate the value to reaching out to your workforce. You can make a meaningful difference so be proactive. Take initiative to communicate your own concern early. Include your sentiment as well as any and all resources available should anyone need to talk to someone. Lastly, share the intent or the plan to facilitate a way to get involved and help those in need. If your organization has the means to match contributions and/or donations this may also be a potential opportunity to match your employees concerns.
Best and Brightest employers understand the value to two-way communication at all times. Ask your people for their ideas and opinions for they may have unique and innovative ways to come together, do good and get back to work feeling good about what they have accomplished and/or discussed. If you want to energize your workforce so that they are giving the best then you must care enough to bring communication to a topic that is on everyone’s mind.
Our thoughts and prayers go out to everyone in Japan affected by the recent earthquake and tsunami. We are thinking of you.