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Has COVID been harder on hospitality staff? How to motivate your people during these times

UK Hospitality

COVID-19 has been hard on every sector, however with restaurants closing for prolonged periods and then opening with tight restrictions, hospitality workers have been hit hard. 

Not only have hospitality workers seen a sharp decline in their income over the past few months, many hospitality workers are suggesting that the return to work has been challenging too.

We’re looking at whether COVID has been harder on hospitality workers and what senior hospitality leaders can do about it.

Why Has COVID-19 Been Harder On Hospitality Staff?

Hospitality staff had it hard during the first lockdown, as the majority of employees couldn’t work. This meant that many workers were left struggling to make ends meet and relying on savings and government help to stay afloat.

Then, once the lockdown period ended, the new measures to try and keep coronavirus at bay made their job a lot more difficult. Not only that, but the public attitude to eating out has shifted with schemes like the Eat Out To Help Out focusing on getting people into restaurants. More customers who are paying less and expecting more, is a recipe for a hard time for hospitality staff. 

Top Reasons COVID-19 has been hard for hospitality staff:

◾Less cash tips: with customers avoiding handling cash and feeling the pinch of the recession, they’re being less generous when it comes to tipping in cash. 

◾Safety pressures and responsibilities: with so many COVID-19 measures that need to be adhered to, wait staff have had to take on a lot more responsibility.

◾Job insecurity: hospitality is one of the only sectors that relies on the public coming in and can’t be done remotely.

◾Increased risk: in coming face to face with the public every day, many wait staff feel that they are at an increased risk of catching COVID-19 whilst at work.

◾An increase in public rudeness: with COVID-19 making everyone a bit more anxious, many hospitality staff have suggested that the public have made their jobs more difficult since lockdown has eased.

How Can You Motivate Your People During COVID-19?

If you’re a manager or business leader in the hospitality sector, you may look at the list of challenges above and think that there’s nothing you can do. Whilst it is true that a lot of those factors are out of your control, there are steps we can take to support our people during these times. 

Take a look at the top ways to keep your hospitality staff motivated during COVID-19:

  1. Make their job as easy as possible

Making their job as easy as possible will relieve stress and help them stay safe. Using a mobile payment solution will make social distancing easier and allow you to reopen safely post-COVID.

  1. Be open and honest

Despite the changes going on with case numbers rising and lockdown measures coming back, try to be open and honest when it comes to COVID communications. This will ensure that your employees trust you and have a good understanding of the changes they may face.

  1. Remain positive

As a manager, one of the key things to do to keep your people motivated is remain positive. This can be easier said than done, but keeping positive in the face of adversity is a sign of great leadership. 

  1. Be empathetic

During this period, try to be empathetic to people’s needs. Your employees will be easing themselves back into work and will have their own personal situations going on, so keeping an empathetic head on will help motivation levels.

  1. Keep safety a priority

Keeping the public safe is essential, however keeping your employees safe should also be a top priority. Make sure that they follow procedures and are protected at all times with the equipment and solutions that they need to work in a post-COVID hospitality industry.

How Using A Mobile Payment Solution Can Aid Hospitality Staff

Working in restaurants and bars is hard enough without the stress of going to tables and struggling to keep social distance. With mobile payments, people are able to order at their table and receive their food with minimal contact. This means that eating out is safer for both the public and your hospitality staff.

Mobile platforms like Yoello also makes tipping much safer and more convenient than handling cash, customers are more likely to tip on every order with a suggested round up.

COVID has been hard on hospitality staff, so providing them with solutions that make their job easier is likely to boost motivation and make reopening after COVID easier. To discover more about Yoello’s payment solution, take a look at how Yoello is helping pubs and restaurants bounce back with a COVID-secure mobile payment solution.

Richard Billingsley
September 21, 2020

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