Returning to Work
Other / May, 22 2020

Is There Fear of Returning To Work Among Employees?

You Are Ready To Return Work, But May Be Team Is Not

Maybe you are ready to return or reopen, but your team may not be. Do not you think that some of your employees may be dealing with anxiety and fear of returning to work.

Work from home is emerging as a new normal for employees, but still, we need to reopen our offices and need workforce there. Business owners are grappling with how and when to reopen their businesses. It is people who open the economies, not only the government’s orders. If employees are dealing with anxiety and fear, the organization cannot resume its services.

Undoubtedly, the government has starting loosen their social distancing restriction. However, according to the latest survey conducted by global human resources consulting firm Mercer of 735 U.S. employers, more than 45 percent said they are already struggling with workers who are reluctant to return to their workplaces because of fear of getting sick.

There is an unprecedented dilemma that business leaders are facing across the globe. One of the significant risks is asking your team to join the workplace and may expose them to the virus. Does that mean offices will be closed forever and cannot be opened? No.

“We have to evolve as we all have done many times earlier.”

Fear Is Common, and You Need To Support Your Team

If you think you can eliminate those fears, it is not possible. Instead, you need to be the leader who comes forward and supports the team.

Please encourage them to be honest to tell you what they are feeling. Listen carefully and give them crystal clear information about safety parameters that you, as a business leader implementing. Make sure there should be complete transparency. As a business leader, you should let them know what you are doing to lower your team’s risk. People surrounded by a group of people they trust feel more motivated.

Let’s plan what reopening/returning to work will look like

You have to plan about reopening; you cannot merely reopen your office without having a solid plan. Work should be done but not at the risk of getting sick at the workplace.  For instance, if your team members use public conveyance to commute, no matter how solid the plan you have placed at your workplace, it would be useless. What about having third party face-to-face meetings? Your team members may help you with these questions and their alternatives.

Listen, Listen and Listen

It’s your team; you must listen to them. You need to understand their feelings, fears, and anxiety they are going through. Let them help you with some ideas to reopen. Please help them to distress. By listening to their fear and anxiety, business leaders like you will surely draft a solution.


Reopening/Returning your workplace is not that much easy, as it seems like opening a lock of your office. There is a lot that needs to be done. It is not a risk that you can manage in your balance sheet; it is a risk of getting someone sick at your workplace. Therefore, when you reopen, the first thing you need to do is consult with your team. 

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