Emotions are impacting employees during coronavirus pandemic

Forty per cent of employees have found their emotions are impacting their work performance during coronavirus.

That’s according to a survey by employee engagement firm Inpulse which found in the last two weeks, 65% of employees were nervous, anxious or on edge with 43% having felt down, depressed or hopeless.

Employee engagement was measured through an Emotional Wellbeing Index using seven core elements: mental health, self, purpose, connection, body, financial and mind.

Women were found to be more concerned about their financial wellbeing than men at 69% compared with 59%.

Some management styles have not suited the crisis, given nearly a third (31%) felt they hadn’t been supported by their line management and 37% don’t feel secure about their financial situation.

Matt Stephens, CEO of Inpulse, said the results are indicative that some businesses need a culture change.

He said: “We can safely say there is a lot of employee anxiety due to uncertainty and change and with that, people feel the culture of the company may be changing too. But from what we’re seeing, this isn’t true - employer values and behaviours are simply adjusting to a new style.

"What employers need to ask now is what was helpful from the old culture that we can use now? And what do we need to get rid of in terms of behaviours, processes and systems to help employees thrive in this new unfamiliar world?”

Yet there have been some positives to come out of the crisis.

Stephens added: “Employers need to understand employee emotions to support their emotional wellbeing through this change, that will then guide them into creating the right interventions that support teams and the business and ultimately lift performance.”

Eighty-seven per cent of respondents said they felt they were part of a supportive community or team and 81% have had meaningful social interactions.

The Inpulse Survey had 113 UK responses and took place from 2-12 April 2020.

Further reading:

How HR can support an organisation when its leader is absent

HR must build psychological safety so employees feel safe to speak up

Permanent roles in job market down by 50%

In times of crisis compassionate leadership is a must