One of the more out-of-date methods of management involved separating your employees’ work life from their home life. This meant that as long as an employee was at work, HR would not intervene or concern themselves with their mental or physical wellbeing. But in this digital age, loneliness at work is becoming a growing problem.
In fact, a recent Harvard Business Review article stated that more than 40 percent of adults in American feel lonely. This can cause their quality of work to go down as well as lead to attendance issues and a general decrease in office morale. If your employees are suffering, early intervention is key. Below are some of our best tips on how to identify and help treat loneliness at work.
- Encourage daily or weekly standup meetings among teams. You can allow your teams to choose how they spend their meetings – whether it’s a Monday morning brief on each person’s weekend or daily goal setting initiative. When your employees interact positively with one another, especially about non-work activities, it cultivates a more friendly, comfortable atmosphere.
- Promote activities outside the office. One way to do this is with a coffee card. HR can purchase a gift card from a local coffee shop that employees may use to take each other out. You can set certain standards so it is not overused, such as when existing employees wish to take a new hire out on their first day or when employees want to interact with colleagues outside their immediate team.
- Schedule one-on-one meetings between managers and their staff. Regular one-on-one meetings will help each employee feel heard and appreciated. These meetings can be casual check-ins or goal setting initiatives. By meeting one-on-one, managers can evaluate each employee’s attitude and identify whether they feel like part of the group.
- Keep your eyes out for those who keep to themselves. Managers and HR representatives should be aware of who seems disengaged from the rest of the company. Reaching out a hand or invitation can help make newer or shyer employees feel more welcome.
How does your office battle loneliness in the workplace? Share in the comments below.