CEOs Planning for Post-Coronavirus Return to Productivity

By: Greg Beaubien
May. 1, 2020
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Once the COVID-19 pandemic subsides, many businesses will find themselves behind on sales and suffering from reduced profits. As Chief Executive reported, leaders must be looking beyond the current health crisis to think about how to resume productivity after the coronavirus has been brought under control.

Here are issues that leaders will need to address:

• Figure out logistics. Among the complex questions CEOs must grapple with is whether to return all employees to work at once or to ease them back gradually. Other considerations include whether some employees will still work remotely; which work functions will resume first; and whether employees’ schedules will change. Leaders should clearly communicate their answers to such questions. 

• Address employees’ layoff concerns. Employees appreciate straight talk, even when the news is bad. Determine the best way to responsibly address what is happening. 

• Reassure workers that their safety remains paramount. Let employees know the company will still sanitize surfaces, encourage hand washing and maintain an appropriate level of social distancing. When they return to work, consider staggered schedules to allow more individual space.

• Manage employees’ desire to collaborate. After working from home for so long, employees will crave face-to-face collaboration with their co-workers. Accommodate those needs while also enforcing some form of social distancing.

• Share information. Remind workers what the business’s challenges are and its status toward achieving goals. Celebrate successes.

photo credit: mt-r