With the current disruption of the COVID-19 virus, a lot of businesses have had a full interruption of their typical business operations. For those companies that are able to continue operating during this crisis, there has been a lot of pivoting, and sudden changes in their ways of operating.
One aspect of everyday business that’s changed is the way people in organizations are communicating. Zoom and other communication tools have exploded with demand from for business and personal communications.
For small businesses that are trying to maintain some sort of normalcy and remain productive, it’s crucial to set up additional procedures and strategies for communicating. At SMB Compass, we’ve implemented new initiatives to help circumvent the challenges we’re facing, and to keep our operations running as smoothly as possible.
Here are 2 key initiatives we’ve taken over the last couple of weeks to help our team.
Daily Standing Calls
Generally, daily live team gatherings and catch-ups are part of the regular routine. These touchpoints cover personal topics, team-related progress, or other company-related issues organically occurring in the in-person aspect of working in an office.
It’s important to establish touchpoints throughout the week to allow these conversations to happen. While we generally don’t set up meetings without an agenda or goal in mind, the goal of these standing calls should be to facilitate sharing of work and life situations.
Some businesses may have too many employees to have a company-wide standing call, but teams that have daily interactions should have a standing daily call to discuss topics like progress, challenges – and even personal situations they’re dealing with.
Our invoice financing team that’s currently all working from home in different parts of the country have a daily call where they cover pipeline-related items, and then spend time discussing material they’ve all read as part of their continuing education in invoice financing.
Additionally, they might talk about personal topics, like new Netflix shows they would recommend, or new recipe ideas.
By taking time daily to vent and discuss, the team continues to strengthen their relationships and keep their camaraderie going.
In unique situations, like the one we find ourselves in now, good leadership is critical. It’s up to leaders to make sure they’re making it part of their daily routine to reach out individually to their peers and team members.
Through these one-on-one conversations, teams will get the opportunity to share empathy during a tough time. There also will be opportunities to learn from others in the organization about potential ideas that could have a positive impact on the business. By enabling personal one-on-one conversations, employee morale will stay high, allowing everyone to still feel part of organization and involved in its success.
One initiative that we’re pushing internally is to have calls between our key team leaders and their groups individually on a weekly basis. Our invoice financing and inventory financing groups are part of the largest groups internally, and are a fluid and fast-moving part of our business. These weekly individual calls create space for important conversations within the chaos of everyday work.