Daily Connections Recap - 4/9/2020 - Building Team Morale

As we enter a period of renewal and change, Your Clear Next Step is committed to helping our customers make their businesses and workdays even better. We will be here to walk beside you, to listen, to connect, and to aid in your search for clarity. In doing so, we are offering a free, daily Zoom call, called Daily Connections, at 1:15pm (CDT) every weekday from 3/19/2020-5/1/2020.

These calls are a chance for us to share tips and discussion about relevant topics (working remotely, maintaining consistency in uncertain times, building relationships across geography, staying motivated, staying connected, etc) and network with each other to provide help and support during this time of change.

Thank you to everyone who was able to join us today! The next call will be Friday, April 10th at 1:15pm (CDT). Click here to join.

On today's call...

Sinikka shared a few tips about building team morale.

Here are some truths that I think will help us build morale. 

  • TRUTH – this moment, April 2020, is hard in an unprecedented way. 
  • TRUTH – bringing the team together can’t happen physically. 
  • TRUTH – the team is not all in the same place emotionally (just as they’re not in the same place physically). 
  • TRUTH – the groundwork you laid before now has a lot to do with what your team feels right now. 
  • TRUTH – lighthearted fun has a time and a place. 
  • TRUTH – some people struggle with levity when the world feels so heavy. 
  • TRUTH – things are different right now than they were three weeks ago, and they keep changing. 
  • TRUTH – things are uncertain right now, and there’s no clear end in sight. 
  • TRUTH – change and uncertainty are two things that cause a whole lot of discomfort for the vast majority of us. 
  • TRUTH – it’s not your responsibility to do it all, fix it all, own it all, make everyone feel all better. 
  • TRUTH – no one can help everybody, but everybody can help somebody. 
  • TRUTH – what worked before won’t likely work exactly the same way now, but it’s still good for inspiration.
  • TRUTH – we choose our own attitudes.
  • TRUTH – temporary relief is better than no relief. 

Tasks - Since you know you can’t do everything for everyone, try starting with one or some of these. 

  1. Pick one person you know needs a lift, and listen to yesterday’s conversation and actively lift them.  
    • Consider the person or persons you’re connecting with, and pick words from the list below 
    • I’m thinking about you 
    • I imagine this is hard for you 
    • I’ve noticed you seemed XYZ in our last calls 
    • I’m here for you 
    • I’d like to help you 
    • How can I help you? 
    • What’s one thing weighing you down right now, and how can I help? 
    • Can I share something I thought was funny? 
    • I had a bright spot today, may I share it with you? 
  2. When talking with teams, be fully aware of these 
    • Things ARE different right now – here’s what’s not changing 
    • Things ARE uncertain – here’s what’s solid 
    • There IS pressure – here’s where/when we can lighten up 
    • We’re all in this together but differently – here are ways to connect with each other 
    • Moments of levity won’t change the circumstance, but we can choose to let them brighten the moment 
  3. Tactical things to try
    • Group happy hours
    • Group sunny moments
    • Fun slack channels
    • 3pm light hearted post of the day
    • Ice breakers
    • Movie watching
    • Problem solving 
    • Shared service projects 

Here were some ideas and questions shared by the group:

  • How are you addressing the word new? “The new normal” 
    • I’m hesitating to do so. So I’m actively trying to avoid words that imply longevity. So, I'm saying things like “for the moment” 
  • If we just concentrate on the things that we’re supposed to say, that’s probably not good enough. I think we need to change the way we are so that it reflects on others. I need to be the guy with the good morale, instead of just saying things to boost morale. 
    • Actions really do speak louder than words.  
  • A few years ago while working on a project, I was trying so hard to be the team cheerleader and boost morale and keep spirits up as best I could when one of the others on the team stopped on day and said “Knock it off. This project just sucks.” and it was a great reminder that we can't move on to building up spirits when we haven't had time to grieve.  
  • We’ve been doing weekly call ins, and on one of them we pranked my boss by all wearing silly hats and silly outfits. So, we’ve challenged ourselves to come up with a fun Zoom background for the next call.  
  • One thing I've tried to do is just make a couple calls a day to different clients, just to give them a chance to breath and vent. Just give them a little space to think and decompress. I’ve heard from a few of them that it’s been really helpful.  
    • I think that would also apply to your teammates. Just reach out to them and let them know that you are available to them if they need it.  
  • I think it’s important, especially if you are in a leadership role, to let those around you that you are going through the same things they are. Let me know that it’s okay to not be okay, and you might not be okay either. 
    • avoid adding anything that looks like guilt or extra pressure, or in any way minimizes or attempts to invalidate their feelings. 

Topics: COVID-19

Sinikka Waugh

About the Author

Sinikka Waugh

Sinikka Waugh is a recognized leader in understanding people and in adapting tools, techniques, and processes to meet the demands of the situation at hand. Since 2006, Sinikka has provided compassionate leadership in transformation initiatives. When she isn’t in front of a class, she enjoys putting her background in English and French Literature to work, by writing blogs about the subjects she teaches every day. Are you ready? If you are, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us! contactus@yourclearnextstep.com


Receive a weekly dose of inspiration in your inbox by signing up for our weekly newsletter