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Rising above COVID-19’s challenges requires strong internal communications

Florida is now reopening in phases, and many businesses and organizations are more than ready to begin a cautious and gradual return to business operations. However, not everything will return exactly as it was before COVID-19, at least not in the near future.

Employers are making tough decisions about how to do business moving forward. The safety of staff and customers is paramount, but some are also facing reduced revenue opportunity. Many employees are understandably concerned about their job security.

That’s why it is critically important for businesses large and small to keep employees informed and engaged as they rise above the challenges created by COVID-19. Hardworking, dedicated employees are the heart and soul of any business, and their support is just as critical as customers over the next few months.

The following seven guidelines can help businesses develop a strong internal communications plan as they move forward:

  • Be open and honest: Employees see news reports of business slowdowns and job losses. Be transparent as the situation evolves and put employees’ minds at ease by explaining how you are addressing the crisis.
  • Communicate early and often: Employees are being inundated with information on news media and social media – some factual, some not. Filter out the noise to relay information relevant to their company, region and employees. Research shows many individuals trust their colleagues more than other sources of information.
  • Meet employees where they are: Many employees are still working remotely or in split shifts to minimize physical contact. Use the telephone, email, text or video chat to keep employees in the loop.
  • Empower managers to engage: Supervisors should be well-versed in company and industry developments, and confident enough to relay accurate messaging and answer employees’ questions.
  • Recognize special circumstances: There is no one-size-fits-all approach during a pandemic. An employee might need to work from home because of a child care situation or need human resources support because a spouse was laid off or furloughed. Be flexible.
  • Show compassion: Tensions run high during a crisis. Keeping a level head and maintaining a human element in communications will always help in the long run.
  • Seek professional help: Companies are experts in selling a product or service, but aren’t necessarily in the business of communications. During this challenging period, Priority Marketing is offering complimentary consultations by telephone and video chat, as well as discounted services to help businesses and organizations rise above the challenges. Additionally, the firm is providing free marketing tips and tools under the “Resources” tab at PriorityMarketing.com.

Well-managed internal communications can calm nerves and share valuable information while empowering employees to make informed decisions about their health, safety and wellbeing.

For more information, please call 239-267-2638 or email info@PriorityMarketing.com.

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