THE CLARUS Blog

4 Ways to Keep Camaraderie Alive at Work During a Pandemic

I hope this email finds you well.

When you’re living in a time when you feel obligated to start every email that way, it’s safe to say things could be better.

How do we keep employees engaged during these challenging times?

How can we ensure employees feel appreciated and feel like we’re keeping their health top of mind?

Here is a breakdown of some ways we are keeping the camaraderie alive at Clarus, while ensuring employees feel heard and safe.

 

1. Find Creative Ways to Move Company Events Online

Back in PC (pre-COVID), Clarus held great company events throughout the year.

These included things like Town Hall meetings and Clarus Cares events where we volunteer in the community.

We also held fun team outings like riding the historic Essex Steam Train and watching the Hartford Yard Goats play.

To mitigate some of that loss with everyone working remotely, we got creative.

We recently started working with an outside company to host both Trivia and Bingo games via Zoom.

There are great prizes, music, and we get to see each other and interact – something we are all missing these days. I’m happy to say that I am a proud Bingo winner and received a $25 Amazon gift card.

 

2. Continue to Keep Employees in the Loop

Transparency is a key pillar of our culture here at Clarus, and we’ve continued to honor that during these trying times.

Our senior leaders and HR team discuss the current climate and what it will take to get back in the office on a weekly basis.

Our quarterly town halls typically are a transparent deep dive into all sides of the business. We’ve continued to have those meetings via Zoom so the updates and conversations don’t stop.

These deep dive business meetings go a long way toward easing employees’ minds because every major aspect of the company is discussed from a results perspective.

 

3. Listen to Your Employees and Act

Clarus has always led with an employee-driven approach. During these unprecedented times, employees are being pulled in many directions and dealing with obstacles they never had to before.

We have employees who are home schooling their children, employees who are now care takers, employees who live alone and are isolated, and employees who are at risk to contract COVID-19.

Knowing all of this, how do you determine the best time to return to the office?

Clarus has been routinely surveying every employee to receive honest feedback on how they are doing and what they’re comfortable with.

We have asked for input on various topics, including what it will take for employees to feel comfortable to return to the office.

This feedback is invaluable in crafting our plan of action to get back to the office, while keeping employees’ health and comfort level top of mind.

 

4. Embrace a Video Culture

When you work in an organization that has a close-knit population of employees, it’s an adjustment to not see colleagues every day.

We have tried to put some things in place to help us ‘see each other’. Many teams have coordinated social events either six feet apart in person (what’s that?!), or virtually.

Here in the land of People Operations, my team has been doing virtual weekly Happy Hours.

It is great to dedicate an hour of the week to catch up with my teammates.

The B2B Marketing team recently got together for a Donut Day at Watrous Park in Cromwell, where we have held our company fall picnic in the past.

Looking more companywide, our creative team asked everyone to submit pictures that sum up their respective COVID work-from-home situations.

They collected the pictures and strung them together to music to make a video for everyone to view. It was great to see people’s ‘home offices’, kids, pets, hobbies, and more.

 

How the Power of Technology Helps Camaraderie

It’s harder than ever to engage employees.

The power of technology and web cameras has helped us bridge that gap, meet employees where they are, and keep the camaraderie alive.

As the iconic saying goes: “Absence makes the heart grow fonder.”

It will be a good day once we are all united again as a #TEAM.

 

If Clarus sounds like an interesting place to be, we’re hiring! Check out our culture video below and head over to our career opportunities page.

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