The past few months have been tough on everyone as the world copes with a new reality amidst the pandemic. Plans getting cancelled, local businesses closing up shop and life in general screeching to a halt.
For some professionals, surviving the outbreak means working and weathering the storm from home, with no definite timeline of when they’ll be returning to the office. Things are harder for some e-commerce businesses. Their daily operations are likely suffering from interruptions caused by retail closures, supply-and-chain problems and even changes in consumer demand.
It can get a bit overwhelming, but you need to remember, amidst this swamp, you still got a company to run and people to please: employees, clients and members of your organisation that need constant assurance and communication.
If you have membership management services in place taking care of your membership communication for you, good. For more insights into how you can keep everyone in the company properly informed and engaged, read on.
Filter Your Messages
In keeping your customers and employees updated on critical information, you must stay considerate in what information you choose to share and how often. Every day, people are bombarded with large amounts of content and getting more emails than usual, so you don’t want to be a part of that flood.
If you just want to say your staff is being extra careful with hygiene measures, for example, maybe it’s something you can skip. Instead, focus on critical updates like policy changes, products going out of stock or shipping delays. And if there are questions directly regarding your processes and procedures, address them with transparency.
Be Honest about Retail Issues
It’s no surprise that many physical retail stores have been ordered to halt operations to limit physical interactions and enforce better social distancing. On your end, be honest and candid when it comes to providing updates on the status of your physical locations and your capacity to serve customers virtually.
For example, keep your website updated to address the current situation. Place a header bar that announces any new changes or even just an assurance that your customer’s orders are being handled to the best of your ability. Update your search listings to reflect available services, store closings, up-to-date contact information and any other relevant details that your customers might find helpful.
When it comes to communicating with your employees, the focus should be on empathy. Workers are on edge, worrying about their well-being and what the company is doing to protect them. According to a survey, 58% of the 600 responses are worried about losing their jobs in the wake of the pandemic, while 62% fear that the crisis will affect their income.
They need reassurance, and along with that, they need a human approach to the uncertainties and anxieties surrounding what continues to be an ongoing economic downturn.
Rule 1: Don’t be flippant. Acknowledge that it’s not business as usual and that employees have a right to be worried. But don’t plant the seed of doom in their minds, either. Words like “we’re all in this together” touch on the idea of unity during a difficult time without getting too deep about a heavy subject matter.
It’s not just a matter of communicating but a matter of how. As severe and devastating as the crisis has been, it won’t last forever. And by the time the dust settles, your clients and employees will have remembered that you kept engaging with them, and in a way that is appropriate, honest and empathetic.