Meeting In Person Again Brings Out the Humanity in All of Us
So your company is returning to the office and reintroducing events for the first time post-pandemic. It’s officially unchartered territory. As a manager, you want to make sure that your clients and employees are excited to return and feel safe doing so. On a human level, there is uneasiness about reentering public areas after two years of avoiding it.
The Wall Street Journal covered the awkwardness of returning to work in person recently. At RG, the awkwardness around returning face-to-face is bringing out the humanity in all of us—the good, the bad, and the uncomfortable.
So lean into it. Communicate your personal preferences upfront and set an example for others to do the same. Be transparent about office rules and expectations. According to Future Forum, only 42% of employees think their employers are being transparent about their post-pandemic policies. There’s no one-size-fits-all solution to avoid the uneasiness of restarting company events, but honesty is a good start.
Most importantly, put your employees’ comfort first. Establish touchpoints and regular check-ins, stay up to date with the latest health guidelines, and foster an environment where people can share freely—their feelings, that is, not their germs.
We’ve put this into practice. At a recent client event the Ricciardi Group hosted at Fotografiska to celebrate over cocktails, we chose a location that would offer space to network and small group tours to keep things feeling intimate without the crowd. Whether you’re organizing gatherings in person, virtually or hybrid, connection is the key. That’s something we hope to experience a lot more in 2022.