Disposable face mask hangs on the side of a computer screen on an employee's desk

Avoiding Workplace Conflict After Working From Home

With many businesses re-opening after several months of working from home amidst a global pandemic, many workers are finding themselves being transitioned back to working out of the office.

Like with any sudden change, it can open the door for potential conflict if the transition isn’t handled with care and preparation.

To help you navigate this delicate transitory period, we will outline the best ways you can transition your team back into the office while boosting morale and mitigating conflict.

How to Prepare Employees For Returning to the Office

Give Plenty of Notice

When mapping out your return to work post-pandemic, it’s crucial that you give your staff plenty of notice – especially for staff with young children.

People need time to not only physically prepare for working out of an office again after months of being away, but also mentally re-adjust to the idea as well.

Providing a minimum of 1 week’s notice to your staff is essential.

Allow Certain Staff to Opt-Out 

A global pandemic presents many challenges for workers, which is why it’s important to be flexible with your “return to work” policy and allow certain staff members to opt-out and continue working from home. This can include:

  • Those with children at home
  • The staff that are immunocompromised
  • Staff with family members that are immunocompromised

Practice Proper Distancing and Sanitation

This one is a given. When preparing to return to work, the health and safety of your team need to remain your #1 priority. Make sure you are fully prepared and have the means to practice thorough sanitation methods and change your office layout to ensure staff can physically distant from each other. Also, be sure to check your province or municipality’s regulations regarding distancing and sanitation requirements in the workplace.

Listen to Health and Safety Concerns

Your staff will likely have concerns about returning to work during a pandemic – and rightfully so. Be willing to listen to their concerns and provide a platform for your team to ask questions and express these concerns.

Effectively Communicate All Safety Measures Being Taken

Whether it’s through all-staff emails, signage at the office, or verbal discussion, make sure that your staff is aware of the health and safety measures in place along with their role in ensuring the safety of everyone working at the office.

Offer Flexibility

Whether it’s allowing staff to opt-out altogether and continue working from home or allowing your team to alternate between working from home and at the office, flexibility and understanding are key to navigating these unprecedented times.

As you can see, communication, flexibility, and keeping the health and safety of your team as a top priority are essential when navigating something as challenging as a global pandemic.

And, by remaining a strong, unified team as you navigate this next uncertain phase, you can surely overcome anything.