Latest Posts

New cannabis bill could see construction taking the high road

The proposed amendments to the Cannabis for Private Purposes bill that seeks to further decriminalise cannabis usage and legalise South…

Read More..

Luxury vs ultra-luxury – What’s the difference?

BESPOKE LIFESTYLE: There are a number of key factors that distinguish ultra-luxury homes form the rest, not least that they’re…

Read More..

Creating sustainable growth and reducing poverty through structural transformation

Urban development domains ACRC’s analytical framework uses the concept of urban development domains to transcend both sectoral and traditional systems-based…

Read More..

A root cause of flooding in Accra: developers clogging up the city’s wetlands

Christopher Gordon, University of Ghana Ghana has six designated Ramsar sites. These are wetlands designated under the criteria of the…

Read More..

Nigerian property crime could be reduced if neighbourhoods were better designed

Adewumi Badiora, Olabisi Onabanjo University Nigeria has a very high crime rate. The Global Peace Index ranked it the world’s…

Read More..

Inner cities are growth engines attracting young homebuyers

Inner city living is boosting the city residential property market and driving urban rejuvenation Inner cities. Love them or hate…

Read More..

Kenya’s push for affordable housing is creating opportunities despite barriers

Raphael M. Kieti, University of Nairobi; Robert W. Rukwaro, University of Nairobi, and Washington H.A. Olima, University of Nairobi In…

Read More..

Heron IVC: Walking the green talk

Waterfall is closing the loop on waste Waterfall prioritises sustainability and responsible environmental stewardship as a strategic imperative, keeping the…

Read More..

21st Aug 2022

Architect Africa Online

Africa's Leading Architecture Aggregator

So darn tired. Of Zoom, of digital, of tech and video

Tired. Exhausted. Fatigued. Worn out. Burned out. Done.

There is one thing that people are more tired of hearing about than the pandemic. Another video meeting. Another Zoom call. Another Teams request. With good reason. A recent peer-reviewed article in Technology, Mind and Behaviour found that videoconferencing activities are exhausting because they’re intense, immobile and mentally demanding. The researcher found that the constant intense eye contact, staring at our own images and trying to interpret barrages of limited non-verbal cues are draining individual resources. Plus, this is not the only cause of pandemic stress and anxiety. People are burned out, overworked, and anxious. If managers took a look out the virtual window they’d see a sea of red flags, raised by people struggling to find stability and sanity.

Nicol Myburgh, Head: CRS Technologies HCM Business Unit.

“It’s impossible for managers or leaders to know what employees are going through in this pandemic,” says Nicol Myburgh, Head: CRS Technologies HCM Business Unit. “Nobody is super human, everyone is experiencing different symptoms that can range from loneliness to anxiety to financial stress. So, the first step is to show people that business leaders and line managers are listening by checking in with them. Even if they can’t do anything about it, the fact that someone is willing to listen makes a huge difference.”

It’s also important to recognise the signs of burnout and emotional distress. A lot of people went into remote working believing that it would be more relaxed and, initially, it was. It was different, it was exciting. Then, as things continued with the virus introducing new variants, lockdowns being extended, and workplaces introducing increasingly strict controls, the pandemic introduced heightened stress levels, loneliness and depression.

“Research has found that people were feeling isolated and frustrated,” says Myburgh. “They have no fun interaction with colleagues at work, now it’s just juggling work and family life in a confined space. There’s no break, no commute to create a break between office and life. The disruption wasn’t just to the office, but to the home, and people didn’t have the tools to manage both.”

This is just one setback. The other is even more pervasive – burnout. Employees have started working longer hours as they can’t switch off their computers, their phones are always on, they are always accessible to clients.

“If employees are experiencing these issues, it can affect the bottom line of the company,” says Myburgh. “The danger is that the company runs the risk of being hit financially if its workforce is disengaged, and the people can potentially just leave. Or worse, self-harm. This is definitely a growing threat in the business, and it’s become absolutely critical for companies to focus on the softer skills of empathy and compassion. Everyone is in the same boat.”

One way of mitigating some of the stress is to offer informal counselling to your staff. By allowing people to connect with a professional counsellor, you are giving them space to deal with the isolation and fatigue, a space where they can feel heard and respected. Also work toward reducing the volume of videoconferencing meetings, give people the time they need to switch off and just do their jobs. If these meetings are essential, consider removing video to reduce eye strain and mental fatigue. Then tie up these steps by building a company culture that doesn’t expect people to be available 24/7, but instead gives them the space they need to live, manage their admin and turn off their work brains.

“Set reasonable boundaries with clients, ensure they only contact your employees in working hours and support your employees when they draw those boundaries,” says Myburgh. “If an employee says no to a client, and the client complains, be on your employee’s side – if this is outside working hours. Don’t play hardball and take the legal tack on working hours and approaches. You can absolutely realise employee potential if you respect their skills and measure their performance on their outcomes.”

Structure is important right now. As are boundaries, open communication, transparency and social interaction. Find ways of providing your people with support through informal counselling, or social engagements, or just listening. And be aware of the strain they’re feeling. It’s not going to end any time soon, so if you build a company that respects these challenges today, you’ll have a truly engaged and loyal workforce tomorrow. One that isn’t burned out, broken and exhausted.


About CRS Technologies

CRS Technologies is a leading provider of solutions and services to the growing human capital management industry, and an authorised South African distributor of the Engage™ suite of human resource and payroll products.

Following its establishment in 1985, the Johannesburg-based company quickly found its niche in the human resources, people management and payroll sector and soon matured into the specialist of choice for blue chip organisations and SMMEs across the globe.

Today CRS is acknowledged as the most proficient international human resources and payroll solutions company, underpinned by solutions and services that help create workplaces of inspired, engaged and rewarded employees. Our approach to market is about maximising value between employer and employee, integrated with innovative technology that unlocks human potential and grows businesses.

CRS achieves competitive advantage through its commitment to global best practice in HCM and its drive to transform HR departments into strategic, value-added business units, be it through bespoke software and services or shared industry insight.

For more info, go to www.crs.co.za


Image by chenspec from Pixabay

error

If you find this website useful please spread the word.

RSS
Follow by Email
WhatsApp