Are Your Employees Doing Nothing? Staying Productive During the War
Friday, March 28, 2003
March 27, 2003 -- (By WhatTheyThink.com contributing columnist Molly Joss) -- Last Friday I was visiting a consulting client and noticed that almost every employee was down in the break room watching war coverage on television. The ones who were at their desks were keeping up with the news via the Internet. Other signs: we noticed a slight drop in site activity here at WhatTheyThink.com last week as the war started. While it’s understandable that employees want to keep up with the news, it’s also understandable that employers are frustrated watching productivity decline in a difficult economic climate. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to help your staff, and yourself, cope during these uncertain times. If you have noticed a drop in productivity at your company and are wondering how you can help your staff make the best of this bad situation, take advantage of the resources for employers and employees the National Mental Health Association has posted recently on its Web site (www.nmha.org). The Association decided to make the resources available because so many companies are experiencing a drain on the mental and emotional resources of their employees. Michael Faenza, President and CEO of the Association, explains, “Each person reacts differently to crisis and a range of responses can be expected. The emotional impact on employees may play out in their performance and productivity, which could lead to missed deadlines, absenteeism or working too much.” Some of the steps employers can take during this time of uncertainty include educating supervisors and managers about the signs of emotional distress and about available resources for employees. Another suggestion is to make temporary changes in leave and travel policies to allow people to address personal needs or to help reassure employees about your concern for their safety. For more information and for fact sheets on coping with stress, you can visit the Association’s Web site or call 800-969-NMHA, x.6642.