Four (4) ways to keep your employees motivated amidst present crisis


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Businesses will need employees to be highly motivated to put in the efforts needed for a rebound.

Many companies as well as their employees have been terribly impacted by the lockdown. While employers are deeply distressed, employees are future-proofing their engagement in present employment. But businesses need the employees to hang on, brave up, put the pieces together, and lead the next challenge to turn things around.

No doubt the present realities represent a crisis. Managing financial resources well to stave off bankruptcy is as necessary as ensuring the ‘foot soldiers’ are prime for a ‘fight back’. That is simply an attempt to compare the stark economic, psychological and social depression to a ‘war’. Bouncing back will require all corporate artillery be fully ready.

It is true, according to Forbes, that 25 of the world billionaires, among who are major tech entrepreneurs, have made more money during the lockdown, $255 billion, than they did in previous quarters.

Conversely non-tech sectors like aviation, manufacturing, entertainment, and fashion, are in a deep. Many businesses in the latter sectors may not make it through the next quarter.

However, if you are leading businesses in any of those affected sectors you need to pick yourself quickly, rework, pivot and find a way to strengthen, or revive, the confidence of your employees. Here are 4 ways you can attempt that arduous task:

a. Mood is contagious. Your employees will respond to your own mood. When you get excited they too will get excited. You need to be ready to provide strong leadership by being brave. Show up excited each day. Talk about how this present crisis presents an opportunity to rethink and restrategize the business despite the challenges. When leaders hang their heads the followers lose hope and get depressed.                                                                                                                                              

b. Be open to the your employees. Let them know what you are doing to make things better. Experience in the past decade has shown that the era of ‘macho’ executive is over. The workers want to sympathize, empathize and contribute where necessary, if possible working extra hours or taking pay cut. But they need you to come out straight.                                                                                                             

c. Provide tasks for each day. Never allow slack or downtime. It is often said that ‘an idle mind is the devil’s mill’. Work and new tasks provide fulfillment and joy. People are happy when they know their time and skills are being put to profitable use. Despite slow business make sure everyone gets something to focus their energy on.                                                                                     

 d. Don’t let them get to the wall before putting ‘food in their tanks’. Hungry stomach doesn’t understand nor speak English. Even though salaries are delayed ensure something is done to help put food on the tables of the employees consistently. That is the hallmark of great leaders.

Toyin Afilaka
Toyin Afilaka
Toyin Afilaka writes with simplicity and insight. He aims to enrich the Nigerian small business landscape. Through Hustle24 he connects entrepreneurs with information about new policies, enterprise solutions and opportunities that will aid their 'hustle'. He has written extensively for CobraReview, a product review portal, and served as a lead project manager for MarketingMix where he consulted as PR consultant for MTN Project Fame and Business Next Titan etc.


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