4 min

Nine Staff Morale Booster Ideas In Times Of Crisis

Experiencing a dip in staff morale during difficult times? Learn how to keep your company morale positive so your team can overcome challenges and stay productive.

Table of Contents

1. Acknowledge and Address Concerns
2. Provide Opportunities for Volunteering
3. Remain Flexible
4. Celebrate Small Wins
5. Show Appreciation
6. Provide Development Opportunities
7. Encourage Team Bonding
8. Offer Support and a Positive Work Environment
9. Lead by Example
Final Thoughts

 

Tough times can take a toll on everyone, from rank-and-file employees to business owners. Pandemics, economic uncertainty, and political turmoil cause stress and anxiety for staff members on the one hand and force many companies to make difficult decisions, such as layoffs and pay cuts, on the other hand. All these factors negatively impact employee morale, setting normal business operations and performance at risk.

For you as a company owner, the well-being of your employees and finding ways to boost morale during tough times must be your top priorities. This article explores 9 practical ideas to help you do just that. Implementing these strategies will create a positive work environment that encourages productivity and employee satisfaction.

1. Acknowledge and Address Concerns

What are the concerns and fears of your employees? What kind of support are they expecting from you as an employer? Actively listen to their concerns and offer support and resources to help alleviate their fears. Be transparent and honest about the situation and provide regular company news about changes or developments. Encourage open communication and create a safe space for employees to share their thoughts and feelings (e.g., anonymous surveys or chats, special boxes in the office). All these actions will help you build trust and foster a sense of community, which is especially important during uncertain times.

2. Provide Opportunities for Volunteering

This is a great way to boost employee morale as it makes people feel good about themselves and their contributions to solving global or local problems. Moreover, supporting your company values with real action adds to your reputation and brand recognition.

One option is to organize company-wide volunteer days where employees can work together to support a local charity or community organization. Another option is to offer paid time off for employees to volunteer individually or as a team. Encouraging employees to develop their own volunteer initiatives and supporting them through fundraising, promotion, and participation are also excellent morale boosters. Additionally, offering matching donations or other incentives for employee volunteer efforts can encourage a culture of giving back and increase overall employee happiness.

3. Remain Flexible

Flexibility is crucial during tough times—adjust workloads, schedules, and expectations to accommodate employees' needs and ensure they can handle their challenges.

  • Flexible schedules help team members balance work and personal obligations during stressful periods. Consider offering flexible hours, remote work, or compressed work weeks.
  • Balancing work and life eliminates stress and employee burnout. Encourage your staff members to take breaks, use their vacation time, and prioritize their mental health.
  • Adjusting workloads is a powerful mood booster as it shows that you aim to create healthy competition with realistic expectations in your team. Ensure that employees have a manageable workload, delegate tasks, and provide the necessary resources and support to perform their duties as efficiently as possible.

Administrating flexible work arrangements can be a douting task for you as a business owner. Tracking and scheduling the working time of your field, office, and remote teams is time-consuming, opening a big room for errors if not automated. Employee Work Schedules in RemOnline allow you to plan working and non-working days, vacations, sick leaves, and days off for each employee in a few clicks, simplifying time accounting and payroll calculation. This calendar is also linked to the Work Order Scheduler for even workload distribution.



plan-weekdays-en.webp (51 KB)Managing work schedules of employees in RemOnline

4. Celebrate Small Wins

Meeting a deadline, receiving a positive customer review, or finding a missing item during a stock take are good examples of small yet significant victories. Celebrating them with your team is a great way to boost positive employee morale, motivation, and overall productivity.

One simple way to celebrate small wins is to acknowledge them publicly—through a company-wide email, a team meeting, or even a bulletin board in the office. Another way is to offer rewards or incentives—this could be something as simple as a gift card or a team lunch. Finally, it's essential to encourage employees to celebrate their own small wins. This can help create a culture of positivity and motivation within the workplace.

5. Show Appreciation

Various experiments show managers’ appreciation and attention to employees' work and dedication are natural staff morale boosters that do wonders. This can be as simple as saying thank you, publicly recognizing their accomplishments, offering small rewards, or extra time off. Another option is to personally congratulate on a work anniversary or send good cheer to a  birthday person in your company. Whatever the method, showing appreciation for hard work and loyalty improves employee morale and increases productivity.


Use RemOnline to automate routine tasks and take the burden of repetitive data entry from your employees’ shoulders. Schedule a 30-minute demo to see it in action.

6. Provide Development Opportunities

Offer training and opportunities for growth and development to help employees build new skills and advance their careers. This helps keep employees engaged and motivated. Try the following proven options:

  • Development programs focusing on specific expertise. This can include workshops, seminars, and online courses that teach valuable competencies like stress management, negotiation, or communication skills.
  • Mentoring or coaching programs. Let your employees learn from experienced professionals and receive feedback on their performance.
  • Stretch assignments or job rotations. Happy employees are those who can explore new roles and career opportunities within their organization, change career paths, and realize their full potential.
  • Career development planning and support. Helping employees set goals and plan their career growth within your company ultimately leads to greater job satisfaction and retention.

 

Running an auto repair business? Find out what employee morale ideas will best work in your industry.

7. Encourage Team Bonding

Several team-building activities can help you build camaraderie and improve morale during tough times. One option is to organize a team-building retreat, where employees can relax and bond over hiking or team-building exercises. Another option is to hold team-building workshops, where employees can learn something new or work on projects together. Additionally, organizing friendly sports competitions or fun team-building games can be a healthy and stress-reducing way to boost morale and encourage teamwork. Remembering that the key to effective team-building is to create an environment where employees feel valued, supported, and appreciated. By investing in various activities for employees, you help your staff feel more connected and motivated, even during challenging times.

8. Offer Support and a Positive Work Environment

Creating pleasant working conditions during tough times requires a combination of empathy, communication, and flexibility. Here are some excellent strategies to use:

  • Show compassion toward employees struggling with personal or work-related issues by actively listening to their concerns and providing support where possible. 
  • Organize regular check-ins with staff as a group and individually to provide support and allow employees to share their thoughts and ideas.
  • Offer mental health support for employees struggling with anxiety, stress, or other mental health issues. This can include access to counseling services and resources for self-care.

9. Lead by Example

For company leaders, it is crucial to demonstrate an inspiring example during challenging times to motivate their employees. You should stay positive, maintain a can-do attitude, and show your team that you will roll up your sleeves and work alongside them to overcome obstacles. Be transparent and communicate openly with your team, sharing good and bad news. Demonstrate empathy and show that you care about their well-being. Encourage collaboration and teamwork to find solutions to the challenges at hand. Finally, lead by example by taking care of yourself and setting an excellent model for work-life balance, as this helps your team stay motivated and focused during difficult times.

Final Thoughts

Whether your company faces financial difficulties, a pandemic, or other challenges, implementing proven morale boosters for employees will help keep your teams positive and productive. Acknowledging the concerns and fears, maintaining a positive work environment, offering opportunities for professional development and growth, and prioritizing open communication, teamwork, and work-life balance can significantly boost employee morale and give your staff a sense of purpose and direction during uncertain times.

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