How do I check in with my team?

Let’s face it, we are all up and down at the moment. We are all looking out for one another and trying to do our best in difficult and uncertain times.

Over the last two weeks, this question about how to check in with your team without overstepping the mark has come up in several conversations: 

  • I need to check in with their mental wellbeing, how?
  • I know that Lockdown 2 is having an impact, but what?
  • I have official post-isolation conversations to have, how?

People are noticing a rise in anxiety / stress / wellbeing concerns within their teams. They are having conversations around post-isolation, coming back in to work, wellbeing, home life, health and happiness that for many have not come up before.

It can feel hard to have these conversations. We fear appearing nosy, saying the wrong thing or unlocking the floodgates.

Here are three tips for you that might help:

  1. Frame the conversation. Be explicit about the things you are worried about. Acknowledging the situation makes it easier for both of you.
    1. If you have to do a ‘back to work’ post isolation call, tell them that is what it is and your concerns about coming across in the right way.
    2. If you are concerned about someone’s wellbeing, tell them.
    3. If you are aware of an issue and don’t know how best to help, ask.
  2. Use a phrase such as ‘tell me…’ to open up the conversation. It has no judgement and invites them to start talking. It shows you care; that you are interested.
    1. Please follow this up by actually being interested in their response, or it kinda spoils it!
  3. If you are not sure what to say, don’t. Just listen.
    1. If you are on the phone with them you can let them know you are still there with; ‘I’m listening, carry on’ or ‘tell me more’ if needed.
    2. Just remember: You are unlikely to make anything worse by listening. You might even help.

Tiny steps make a marathon remember. Change one little thing you do and see if it helps you or those around you.

What tips would you give from your experiences?

And tell me, how are you doing today?

The Harrison Network supports the development of human-centred leadership through our daily interactions with one another. 

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