Working from home blurs the lines between our professional and private lives. Covid-19 forces us all to deal with the challenging balancing act of managing expectations and being productive while trying to be present in our personal lives and staying healthy.
“Covid-19 and Teams meetings sum up our continued reality. I know you are performing your absolute best and providing excellent service to our customers and colleagues. The conditions we work under are far from optimal and it continues to amaze me that you don’t let that stand in the way of finding the best solutions. I encourage you to show the same care for yourself as you do to our company. Be conscious of what well-being is to you and use the flexibility this pandemic gives us positively; go for a walk during the day, use the time not stuck in traffic on your family and take the time to wind down after an intense work period. 2021 will hopefully soon bring more normality into our lives,” says CEO Torben Carlsen.
“It’s more important than ever that we speak up about how we’re doing, and we need to make personal choices to ensure we look after our own well-being,” Chief People Officer Anne-Christine Ahrenkiel says. “No one expects you to be working 24/7. You also need to take care of yourself. Take breaks, get some exercise and do not book meetings back-to-back. If you think a colleague is struggling, ask if there is anything you can do or propose that he/she seeks help privately or via local HR, who can help assess the situation and provide the appropriate assistance. If you need help or advice yourself, talk to your friends, colleagues, family or contact local HR, sooner rather than later.”
“There is always someone you can talk to if you are struggling, whether you need advice on how to regain energy or assistance with adjusting your physical working conditions. Do not let your issues fester before you reach out, we will always take you seriously and support you in dealing with any professional, mental or physical issue you are facing. We will get through this together,” Anne-Christine says.
A few ideas
DFDS’ Staff Association in Denmark Chairman Karsten Grumsen has come up with a few points on how we can help take care of each other. “As colleagues, we have the responsibility to be aware of each other’s needs and maybe do a little more than might be expected of us once in a while. You don’t have to be a manager to initiate the activities below and they might just contribute to a more positive and relaxed ambience in your team,” he says:
- Start the day with your team. We should be able to find the time to say good morning, share relevant info and tell each other how we’re doing.
- Start meetings with a bit of informal and friendly chitchat. We all need to see a friendly face these days.
- Do a Teams seminar, where you and your colleagues learn more about the tool’s many functions
- Invite a colleague you haven’t seen in a while for a virtual coffee.
- Host an after-work event, where you show your colleagues your home office.
- Consider if a quick call could help solve what you’re working on, as opposed to using email or dealing with it alone.
- Write to a colleague and ask how he/she is doing.
- If your manager hasn’t scheduled a 1:1, you can schedule one yourself.
- Make a virtual bulletin board where you share pictures of today’s walk or anecdotes with your colleagues.
General tips and local help
On the Bridge, we have a Remote Working section, where you can find tips on working effectively from home, caring for yourself and how to manage teams remotely. We offer managers remote leadership training and webinars in some locations. Other, more tailored forms of available assistance depend on local employment terms and your health insurance policy. Contact local HR to find out what applies to you.
February 4, 2021