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To all HR managers: do you regularly check in with your employees?

As an HR manager you probably keep a close eye on how your employees are performing. But, are you also aware of how they are doing mentally? Knowing what’s up with everyone’s mental health is just as (or more!) important than just knowing how they are performing. It is important because it ensures that you feel connected to your co-workers and - assuming that you have your employees' best interest in mind - is something you actually want to know. Besides: mentally healthy employees deliver better results and work both faster and more efficiently. It is a win-win.

Monthly check-in with employees

In your company, do you regularly (for example once per month or maybe even once per week) check in with your employees? Do you pay enough attention to their mental health? If you are not sure about the answer, it is probably a ‘no’. Time for change!

Monthly check-in: how and what?

If you are currently not regularly checking in with your employees or when these check-ins might need some improvement and more depth, we would like to show you what a check-in moment could look like. Keep in mind: the needs of your employees come first. Don’t forget to ask everyone individually what they expect and what they would like to talk about during the recurring check-ins. Properly listening to what someone has to tell you is always a good idea. And, in this case: the key to a company full of satisfied employees.

Things to keep in mind during a check-in:

  • Take the time for someone. The check-in is not something to quickly check off your to do list. You are talking to real people who have real feelings. And who might have something very important to tell you. Give them time to think about how they are feeling and what they want to share with you.
  • Listen without judgement. When someone is sharing something it’s not up to you to immediately have an opinion. You are in conversation to check in on your co-workers, to find out how they are feeling and what their experiences are. No need to judge.
  • Wait with your next question until someone is done speaking.
  • Never ever assume that someone is doing okay. The employee who always seems to thrive at work or the one that seems to be in a good mood all day every day may just as well be feeling awful or stressed inside.
  • It can help to send a small questionnaire before the check-in. You could include questions like: How much stress do you experience on a scale of 1 to 10? Do you mostly enjoy being at work? What changes could be made to make it more enjoyable? Having the answers to these questions will ensure that you already have some things to talk about.
  • Close your laptop and put your phone on the table with the screen down. Show the person in front of you that they got your full attention during this conversation.
  • Make sure that everyone feels safe. Respect the other person's vulnerability.

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