Your staff is the engine of your company. You need to re-fuel and tighten the loose screws, so when the light goes green, you’re all good to go.
Let’s name and shame the stressors that have been draining your energy, so that you can tackle them head-on. We have some great tips to help you neutralise the nasties and recharge your batteries.
Where all the energy went
As you loop in and out of eustress (good stress that motivates) and distress (evil stress that negatively impacts health and productivity), let’s call out these nasties laying siege to your workdays.
- Down the disconnect drain
Lockdowns, restrictions and remote working caused many of us to experience social withdrawal. Informal chats by the watercooler used to be opportunities for information exchange and connection. The disconnect has caused anxiety, even depression; and at least, apathy.
Conditions keep changing and uncertainty lingers: over re-opening destinations, entry regulations, and the nature of emerging markets. It’s not always clear where to focus, with cautious travel demand peeping like a meerkat out of a burrow if it’s safe for the clan to emerge.
When individuals feel disengaged from the job at hand, from the team and whatever’s going on out there, the resulting stress can stunt productivity.
- Multitasking mania
Your staff numbers are reduced – your resources stretched thin. The team who held down the fort have been overwhelmed by tasks and processes that were previously easy to manage.
The goal posts have shifted – the old routines and systems will no longer meet changing needs. There’s confusion about priorities (or there are simply too many to address at once).
Your daily hustle has become a fight against split focus and diluted energy, and your efforts may feel ineffective and unproductive.
- Future unknown
Forward planning has been like squinting at the light glimmering deep inside a dark tunnel: is it the end of the tunnel or an oncoming train? Navigating the way forward has probably felt like skating on an oil spill.
The unknown hijacked your strategies and budgets. While some signs are emerging tentatively, nobody has a clear picture of how the tourism landscape will look when pandemic restrictions become fully past tense.
This legacy of stress can be tempered, and the controls are in our hands – proaction is your best course of action. We recommend three approaches to alleviating stress and reinvigorating energy levels at work:
1. Mind your routine
Mindfulness is about practising self-awareness in every little task. No task is insignificant because all that good energy adds up.
Understand your decisions better, mindful of the biases that led you to form them. Consciously play to your strengths and reach out to teammates to help you overcome weaknesses. That way you correct small aberrations before they grow horns.
Train your brain to live in the moment. It teaches you where to put your focus and energy, invigorating you with a mental recharge.
2. Deliberate leadership
Employees take their cue from the leader’s attitude; so, share your vision openly with the entire team. They want your aims communicated deliberately, to see that you’re positioning the company for growth.
Leadership on autopilot leaves a team wondering, untethered, and stressed. Positive mindset must filter down from the top to be sustained. Focus on your response, not the circumstance. Set achievable, short-term goals as part of the bigger plan. Acknowledge hard work and praise accomplishments.
Share motivational mantras with the team at the start the work week – it helps inject the ‘why’ that drives your business into your team’s daily efforts, and promotes solidarity and inclusivity.
3. From survival to recharge
Emerging from a bad time for business can be the right time for new business! Energise your staff by shifting focus onto new markets and products. Inviting employees to collaborate on new developments is a great motivator.
If you’ve cut processes and tools, channel your energies into the areas identified as the most valuable to your operations – support your team through the adjustments, and leave nobody behind.
Jumpstart your engine
A wise observation notes: where focus goes, energy flows. Direct your team’s focus to operational functions that can be recharged as healthy work habits.
- Informed team, motivated team
Solidarity is caring. By creating a space for staff to express themselves, free of judgement, and allowing them to share what they want to learn, you can elevate the team spirit in your company.
Optimise your team’s skills, knowledge and experience, and pool resources, enabling others to share what they know with the rest of the team.
After so much time apart, you must make concerted efforts to keep lines of communication open. Some individuals may be disinterested in maintaining relationships – remind them with action (more than words) that they remain part of a team.
- Organised team, focused team
Time becomes a great stressor when everything is prioritised (and nothing is a priority). Manage expectations and schedule priorities in order to manage your time better.
Project manage team work using Asana, Microsoft Planner or similar – get organised by listing tasks with reasonable deadlines and clearly-defined outcomes. It focuses the attention and directs the energy towards manageable action. Ticking off tasks is also very rewarding and cathartic.
- Engaged team, inspired team
Recharging is about revitalising your existing good stuff with new vision and inclusive strategies.
Involve the entire team in exploring your company’s place in the changing landscape. Encourage them to participate in trade shows, connect with trade partners, share solutions, and monitor the competition.
Learn what others are doing or not doing, and what you can do to stand out.
- Healthy team, happy team
Batteries are worthless when they’re empty. Take care of your mental health:
- Challenge teammates to fun desk exercises.
- Try habit-stacking, where you gradually allocate more time to good habits. Wake up ten minutes earlier every week to start your morning meditation, journaling or exercise, until you’re waking up an hour earlier and loving the start of each day.
- Take a personal day to recharge your body and mind.
- Connect with teammates just to chat; not about work.
- Thank a teammate for lending support or a job well done.
- Reward teammates with small treats or pamper hampers.
- Run team building activities to keep staff connected and engaged with each other.
There’s an air of excitement out there. By shifting gears, doing some self-care, and neutralising stress, you can revitalise your team, and prepare them to function at full throttle.