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Microsoft

Many organizations around the world are figuring out how to cope with the impact of crisis while still maintaining business continuity. Everything has changed so fast, and this is an unprecedented time, we understand that the health and well-being of your employees remain your top priority. We believe providing support to employees' mental health should and will remain a priority for every organization around the world. We understand that leadership takes on greater importance during times of stress and uncertainty, and people managers play a significant role in supporting the employees.

 

In large organizations with global footprint, employees may look for guidance from local and global leadership. In all cases, employees will look at their direct managers to get advice, and managers may want to provide employees with updates from the most recent SLT discussions.

 

The role of a people manager is to create clarity, generate energy, create a comfortable environment for employees, and drive results. Employee interaction with the immediate team varies from organization to organization. In most cases, you may notice that employees are bound to work 2-3 hours minimum per week with that immediate group.

 

People manager teams could help in this crucial stage as the manager could engage with the employees, showing empathy, run virtual coffee breaks, and bringing their direct reports together. Creating people manager teams and attaching important portals such as your crisis communication portals will allow your managers to engage with their employees with the latest information. Among many other things, people manager teams help monitor the situation, conduct team meetings, collaborate and encourage direct reports to share best practices and be supportive of each other.

 

Your IT could easily automate to roll out a people manager team for every manager (as an owner) and direct reports (as members) and preload that team with structured channels and tabs. Kindly review this article to learn more about advantages of people manager teams, and to understand how to roll these teams as organizational level or divisional level.

 

For organizations who are starting the Microsoft Teams journey or recently started the journey, people manager teams linked to the crisis portal could be a great starting point. This would ensure that employees are kept up to date on the information shared by the leadership and important matters are discussed with their direct managers. In addition, customers have the option to roll out crisis communication app, within this crisis communication app employees can report their work status (e.g., working from home) and make requests. This helps managers coordinate across their teams and helps central response teams track status across the organization.

 

  1. Review this article to learn on how to create people manager teams at scale using organizational and divisional structure in Azure AD.
  2. Review this no cost self learning course from Solartech, a training partner, on how people managers could efficiently use Microsoft Teams. This course is targeted for people managers on how to use teams and be an effective digital manager.
  3. Learn how to provision Microsoft Teams with pre-configured channels and tabs such as crisis communication portal.

 

Summary

In the age of disruption caused due to crisis, people and organizations are coming to terms with digital tools to comply with preventive measures and overcome disruptions. The need to turn to 'smart working' to keep things going implies a considerable shift in mindset and culture - not natural. The challenge is not just providing a solution, but rather to ensure it is fully embedded and adopted by end-users to enable effective remote work, and ultimately maintain business as usual (as much as possible). These people manager teams could help with the power of being together, to keep employees connected and showcase how remote workers could collaborate effectively despite the crisis.

 

Highlighted article:

Return to work - Office Space distancing

 

Create the breakout experience for your teamCreate the breakout experience for your team

 

Keep your team informed about the company guidelines and leadership messagingKeep your team informed about the company guidelines and leadership messaging

 

Keep all your work together and make it visible to foster collaborationKeep all your work together and make it visible to foster collaboration

 

Resources & related links

 

Related Posts: *note: this list will be update periodically over the next several days

Resources:

Remote Teamwork with Microsoft Teams

Crisis Management Portal

Company Communicator

Crisis Communicator

Introduction and Microsoft Response to COVID-19

 

Authors

 

Pradeep headshot.jpg

Pradeep Bethi, Customer Success Director for Healthcare and Lifesciences 

 

 Vasu_cropped_preview.jpegVasu Sharma, Customer Success Manager for Healthcare and Lifesciences