As you can imagine, the changes that COVID-19 brought to the workplace impacted team morale at many companies.
Between increased telework and more reliance on technology, employees and execs have had to adjust to interacting with colleagues differently.
A new survey from Paychex shows just how the new pandemic normal continues to impact team morale for Finance pros and across the board.
Connections affected team morale
Overall, workplace morale has decreased from pre-pandemic levels, according to the survey.
More workers currently describe team morale as somewhat low (23%) than did before the pandemic (10%). And fewer employees describe it as high (nearly 12% now versus 22% before).
Relationships with co-workers also changed during the pandemic, in part likely due to changes in the way people interacted with each other. But, on the bright side, more work relationships improved during the pandemic (36%) than got worse (20%), per the survey.
Additionally, more managers (49%) than employees (18%) said their relationships with co-workers got better during COVID. Having managers who cared about keeping these bonds strong had a significant impact on workers’ morale.
Employees who had higher morale and better connections with their team during the pandemic had leaders who gave them time during meetings to:
- talk about current events (52%),
- discuss how they were doing outside of work (47%)
- acknowledge stress or work burnout (46%), and
- “vent” or talk about work frustrations (44%).
Morale was also high among teams who knew each other well (60%), employees who were allowed to have flexible schedules (70%) and workers who chatted with each other outside the office (45%).
In addition, these groups had higher productivity than employees who didn’t know their co-workers well and didn’t have flexible scheduling.
Remote hours may be tough to track. But those who’ve been allowed to telework since the pandemic started report both higher levels of productivity (53%) and better morale (47%) than their counterparts in the office (41% and 32%, respectively). They also report slightly less stress.