As a business leader, it is tempting and inevitable that in moments of crisis you focus on your financial viability. But what about your broader role as a leader and keeping your most precious asset – your staff – engaged?

Excalibur is a SME who supply Telecom and IT services for fellow SME’s. I would caveat this article with we are one of the lucky ones to have a business that is still open and pretty busy.

We have always focused on driving the magic combination of staff engagement and customer satisfaction. We believe a total focus on your staff – we call them Partners – leads to customer satisfaction and therefore business growth. This focus has been our north star during the crisis.

Here are 6 simple things we have been doing (no apologies for how absurdly simple they are) –

  1. Daily team calls mandatory at 0900. Each team has an informal call every day to outline the formal and as importantly informal stuff happening (Box set choices, lunchtime menu)
  2. Company-wide updates weekly – via video call. Live update over MS Teams with comments coming over chat. We tell the staff what we know and what we don’t. Honesty is always appreciated.
  3. More reward and recognition – Now you cannot walk the floor, find new ways to recognise staff. Keep finding good things to appreciate.
  4. Business as Usual – keep some of the rituals going. We still hold most planned internal meetings to maintain structure and check business KPI’s.
  5. Furlough – we furloughed about a third of our staff on full pay. However, I called and explained it to them personally. We also still keep in touch with them socially so they don’t feel left out.
  6. Have a drink together – we end the week with a ‘bring a drink’ video call. Most of the content is not printable but a lighthearted way to mark the end of another tough week.

Simple – yes and certainly not rocket science but it has helped us so far. Communication is everything even if there are lots of unknowns.

Peter Boucher, CEO

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