Dear American Workers,
Millions of you have spoken, and we hear you. This is where you get off the merry-go-round of reporting to the workplace. Your reasons are as personal as each of you. Possible exposure to a fatal virus. Lack of reliable childcare. Wages. Hours. Commutes. Personal illness. Grief.
We’ve all been through a lot. We’re tired of all the stress and isolation.
The work-from-home arrangement many companies adopted last year gave birth to a new social contract between management and employees. Productivity was surprisingly good at first.
However, extended periods of no contact have allowed some people to get a little bit lazy. Cutting out early here. Missing a deadline there.
“Will anyone even notice if I don’t turn in that report? They probably don’t need it anyway. I’ll just stop doing it and see what happens.”
Each time a deliverable is late or missed, it chips away at the trust and good will of your team.
November is traditionally a time to reflect and to count your blessings. It is also the time for an honest, humble evaluation.
Have you met all your goals up to this point? If not, why? How should you pivot to do better moving forward?
Accountability and Integrity
Consider this a wake-up call to all you high achievers who are making critical decisions and driving organizational success. Stay sharp!
First, acknowledge that many things have happened outside of your control this year. You are only responsible for owning your actions when external forces present challenges. You can choose between growing from the experience or collapsing under the pressure.
Grade yourself on what you set out to do versus what you’ve actually accomplished year-to-date.
How big is the gap? Are you seeking a little grace in light of things beyond your control? Just as important; are you extending the same grace to everyone around you who are in the same boat? How many of the things left undone can be attributed to unclear communication? Lack of buy-in?
As we discussed in our Open Letter to CHROs, the real numbers aren’t quite as rosy as we pretend them to be. In an attempt to be benevolent during the pandemic, managers have graded on the curve or rounded up dollar amounts to help their people qualify for bonus checks.
Expect to be held to a higher standard next year. Develop a plan for personal excellence now so that you will be rewarded handsomely in 2022. Begin talking with your teammates and your supervisor about your performance. Give and receive the gift of honest, constructive feedback to elevate your game.
How Are You Taking Care of Yourself?
The Executive Coaching program at inclineHR takes a holistic view of an individual’s wellness and likens it to a four-legged stool. Are you foundationally stable in the areas of physical, mental, spiritual, and financial health?
Our coaching clients’ fourth quarter check-in usually begins with, “How are you doing from a physical health standpoint?”
It’s critical to maintain good health through physical activity, balanced diet, proper hydration, and adequate sleep. If your body is suffering your professional productivity, mental clarity, and outlook on life will reflect it as well.
Most people are struggling with some aspect of their mental health check-in right now. Isolation is hard, even on the most introverted individual. We cannot deny our need for socialization and human interaction.
It’s challenging not being able to connect with peers and supervisors in regular face-to-face interactions. Zoom is a convenient tool for business. It does not take the place of going out for dinner with friends or joining in some team-building activity with your department.
Extended periods without human contact causes a person to lose a sense of connection to society and can threaten their psychological safety.
Who is your trusted confidante? How frequently do you talk with them?
The pandemic has disrupted many people’s spiritual traditions and practices. As houses of worship moved to virtual events, attendance became more like watching a video of your favorite clergyman and less like engaging with a community of likeminded neighbors. Returning to the pews has not been easy for some who feel unsafe in crowds during Covid spikes. The whole situation has people asking why God is allowing this to go on so long.
Regardless of how you identify on the spectrum of world religions, meaningful rituals and sacred texts have afforded people comfort and hope across the millenia.
Are you an active practitioner of your faith? What are you doing that transcends the here-and-now to lift your spirits?
The pandemic has inflicted damage on a lot of people’s financial health, particularly for those whose income depends on being face-to-face with their customers. If your workday routine simply changed locations from the office to your spare bedroom, you probably did not feel the financial pinch.
However, many are wondering how to pay the mortgage, car notes, credit card bills, medical bills, etc. The fear of bankruptcy is real. Bank accounts are depleted. The dire need to generate income drives some in our communities to call for opening the marketplace back up while others stress public health and safety measures.
The financial fallout of Covid has deepened the divide between the haves and have-nots. While the delineation is mostly along household income lines, even upper-bracket earners with high debt-to-income ratios are feeling the brunt too.
Do you have cash reserves for an emergency? Are your assets protected and investments optimized?
When Will You Start to Take Action?
Much is made of the New Year’s Resolution, but they fail more often than not.
New behaviors demand repetition to become successful habits. Why wait until January 1 to begin doing what you already know would be beneficial? Now is just as good a time as any to enact plans to improve your physical, mental, spiritual, or financial health.
By the time you turn the calendar, you could be well on your way to effecting real change in your life.
If you find yourself wavering over your professional future and you desire wise, strictly confidential input, inclineHR can help you drastically change the trajectory of your career.
Very truly yours,