For HR Leaders, Appreciation Is Bringing Relief

This blog series shares how leaders are navigating this new world with their people. Recently, we outlined pulse results as they launched the Waggl COVID-19 program. Now, we share an inspiring theme that our Customer Success team is seeing emerge as HR leaders and teams review results: widespread appreciation is bringing relief.

From the moment customers began launching Waggl COVID-19 pulses, we have all been watching this program evolve together. Five weeks ago, our CS team created a dedicated Slack channel for this. It is now a fascinating record of customer questions, insights and feedback. This is helping us discover a poignant theme emerging as HR leaders review their pulse results. Much to their surprise, they are hearing widespread appreciation for their proactive outreach and support. With this, they are experiencing a profound shift from anxiety to relief.

Early outreach to employees

When the outbreak began, most leaders wanted to understand what their people needed first and foremost. Through the Waggl platform, they asked:

  1. What is one question you have about the impact of COVID-19 that we can help answer?
  2. What is the most important thing you need right now to work effectively?

The benefits of transparency

A transparent platform like Waggl lets leaders listen to their organization at scale, and share results in real time. During past pandemics, transparency has helped countries and companies make decisions quickly with the best information available.[1] Recently, industry analyst Josh Bersin referred to Waggl’s transparency as “the free flow of information and feedback that is essential to trust.”[2] However, this trust also requires vulnerability. As researcher Brené Brown states, “vulnerability is the birthplace of trust.”[3] 

The courage of vulnerability

Our Customer Success team helps customers determine when to share results, and to whom within their organization. Also, the platform keeps responses anonymous and filters out proper names or profanity. Still, leaders demonstrate vulnerability and empathy when they ask questions without predetermined answers. Leaders might not know how to respond. Or, they might receive constructive criticism. Earlier, we outlined how this vulnerability and empathy are the first steps towards resilience. We’ve supported customers in this process for many years and guide them with best practices. Still, leaders take a leap of faith to gain this resilience. 

Vulnerability brings appreciation

A Fortune 250 financial services company took this leap of faith. It launched the Waggl COVID-19 program to over 18,000 employees. Within 6 hours, 72% had responded. A senior HR leader shared with us how they had expected answers to reveal widespread fear and stress. Instead, to their tremendous relief, they saw “thank you” pop up again and again. Respondents also commented that HR’s outreach was boosting their pride in the company.

Furthermore, they were hearing through other channels that employees were struggling with the technology for working from home. Leaders thought this might be a systemic issue. Instead, pulse results showed that this was a localized issue they could address quickly.

Insights now, and for the future

We are also seeing how appreciation is bringing relief at a large dental benefits provider. Their HR team used Waggl to ask employees: What is the biggest challenge that you are facing while working? (Childcare, caring for others, internet connectivity, etc.) If you are not facing challenges while working, please put, “no challenges.” Over 1,150 responded within the first day. 

All of the top 5 responses relayed “no challenges.” Moreover, a top response stated that “the new working from home policy helps me take care of my family and makes me feel safe – thank you.” In addition to confirming that their actions were on track, the HR team gained valuable new data. 

We are all uncertain about the duration of this pandemic. Therefore, discovering how much their employees appreciate working from home helps future planning. Now they can weigh this when drafting reentry policies in the future.

Continuing ahead together

It is extremely heartening to witness how this appreciation is bringing relief to HR leaders and teams. As our customers continue their journeys, we will continue sharing key themes and best practices. In the meantime, we invite all customers to join our Waggl Customer Community. Here HR peers that use Waggl across their organizations share their findings on how to navigate this pandemic.

Also, Waggl is partnering with Josh Bersin to invite all HR professionals to share their firsthand insights through weekly Waggl pulses. We welcome you to join the conversation on topics that matter today, including workplace safety and remote work.

Image credit: Vertigo3d