Lockdown doesn’t mean we can’t recover

Lockdown is the biggest shock since the 1920s. To bounce back businesses need to protect employee wellbeing and team morale.

March 27, 2020 3 mins read

Lockdown is affecting us all, but people’s individual experiences are likely to be very different. For some, staying at home will be a peaceful oasis. For others, it will be a place of tension and little privacy.

Lockdown is affecting every business too. In fact, it is probably the biggest shock to the whole economic system since the 1920s. Some businesses have already closed shop and many more are in pure survival mode. For the rest working from home has become the new normal and teams that worked closely together are having to suddenly adjust to being remote.

But as dramatic and harsh as lockdown is, it will be lifted. It is a temporary measure. It may be we have three months of it, or reduced travel and physical contact for an extended time, as treatments and vaccines are developed. However long it takes, there will be an end to this.

For all of us individually and collectively struggling with the emotional and financial fallout, it is crucial to keep this in mind — in the words of the Sufi poet Rumi “This too shall pass.” 

Doing our Part is an Act of Kindness

It is a time when we all have to do our part and stay home to help the healthcare workers that are putting themselves on the frontline. Individually we can join our efforts to meet that of the millions of people performing local acts of kindness.

Many businesses are doing their bit too. Zara, the Spanish fashion brand, has switched its production to creating protective masks and gowns for hospital staff. LVMH, the luxury perfume brand, is now making hand sanitizers. Dyson is starting to make ventilators. These efforts are in addition to the thousands of small businesses that are adapting and reaching out within their local communities. 

In contrast, some businesses seek to be self-interested and are facing the wrath of the public. Mike Ashley of Sports Direct fame tried to claim his stores were an essential service. No one is buying it. 

What can I do?

I have been asking myself “what can I do?”.  As a statistician, it has always been my personal (and professional) mission to highlight the importance of people’s wellbeing. Over the last 25 years I have worked extensively with governments and other international agencies designing statistical indicators and practical policies to promote quality of life and wellbeing. 

I have spent the last few years transferring these ideas to the world of business. Together with colleagues I have built a new platform called Friday Pulse™ which measures and improves employees’ experience of work. It was designed in happier more optimistic times, but I think that in the current climate it is even more relevant. 

I know I can’t find a cure for this virus, but I genuinely believe that our platform can help you and your teams navigate this crisis. 

So in the spirit of offering what we can during these challenging times I would like to invite any small or medium-sized enterprise to make use of the Friday Pulse™ platform free of charge for the next 12 weeks. 

Make use of Friday Pulse for free – this is how it can help your teams

We are facing unprecedented changes to our daily way of life and how we work. Remote working is suddenly the default, not the exception. While organizations are currently scrambling to get employees set up and able to operate from home, they will very soon need to switch to doing what is needed to protect and maintain employee wellbeing, team morale and culture. 

Friday Pulse builds on a critical insight that I gained during my public policy work: that if data is to be actionable it needs to be timely. 

This is why we designed Friday Pulse™ to be a weekly tool to track how people are feeling on a week-by-week basis. Collecting this ongoing feedback provides real-time insights into how people and teams are faring. As well as data insights, my team and I are on hand with tips and advice based around the 25 years of research we’ve put into the science of happiness. 

Bounce back

Lockdown does not mean down and out. To bounce back, we all need to display a team spirit and work together. We need to support each other as we deal with our personal and professional challenges. We need to adapt and adjust — building resilience as we recover from our difficulties. 

All of us at Friday Pulse want to do our bit to help you and your business get through this. Please do take us up on our offer.

To find out more please get in touch with our Head of Helping People, Clive Steer, at [email protected]

You can see a new video that I shot at home (of course!) outlining the offer on our homepage.