Today’s post comes to us from the executive director of The Workforce Institute, Dr. Chris Mullen, Ph.D., SHRM-SCP, SPHR.
Today, rather than our regularly scheduled look back at what’s been written about at The Workforce Institute over the course of the month, we’re instead taking a look back at the most viewed posts written this year. This is a different list than our most viewed posts ever written – that title is still held by board member Sharlyn Lauby’s 2014 post titled The Scientific Method Isn’t Just for Scientists with 56,000+ views and counting – which we think benefits, aside from Sharlyn’s signature clarity and insight, from elementary school Google searches across the world. Rather, this list looks back at the most-viewed posts written in 2020 and gives us an interesting snapshot of the year that was. So, without further ado:
This post was written in April by former Workforce Institute board member Raciel Sosa who wrote about the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on his home base of Mexico, and provided four great tips for helping employees be successful while working from home – from focusing on results to clearly defining objectives. A great post to read again and again as the great WFH experiment continues.
This post ran in May when we asked three UKG Technology Partners (Butterfly, SYRG and Widget Brain) to share the lessons they were learning about frontline workforce management during the pandemic. It’s a hallmark of The Workforce Institute to focus on the frontline workforce – it’s why we formed 13+ years ago – and nothing is more instructive than hearing from organizations who are out there making it work under unbelievably difficult circumstances.
This post from May written by long-term board member John Hollon has a title that pretty much speaks for itself. No one could have predicted at the start of 2020 what a critical skill managing remotely would turn out to be, and John distills perfectly why it’s a skill that’s here to stay.
This post from April from longtime board member Dennis Miller took an especially compassionate look at the mental health concerns of Gen Z during quarantine. Dennis points out that those of us who have been through previous crises in the workplace (The Great Recession of 2008, the Dot-com bubble burst of 2000 to name just two) have a different and more long-term perspective on volatility in the workplace. Dennis makes the case for the importance of sharing that experience and providing comfort and stability to our younger colleagues.
I wrote this post in August of 2020 as the COVID-19 pandemic and quarantine life stretched into its sixth or so month – much longer than any of us ever thought possible. By this point, it was becoming quite clear that working life as we knew it might never go back to normal and this article gave me the chance to dig into what that might mean and what office space might look like in 2021 and beyond.
Our first entry on this list from a pre-COVID world is no surprise. Our yearly predictions are always a big hit and one of our most-viewed posts of any year. I attribute this to our ability to tap into our amazing board of advisors and get their invaluable thoughts and insights into the year ahead. While we couldn’t have predicted how 2020 unfolded (!), we surprised ourselves with how on-point our predictions were even as we reflected back upon them later in the year. You can check out our brand new 2021 predictions here and find previous years predictions here: 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013.
This March post from board member Martin Armstrong has all the hallmarks of every great post he writes for us. Martin has a unique ability to bring his singular professional experience to any topic and boil down complexity into actionable steps that anyone can use to be better at their given profession. Lots of great advice in this post that will be relevant long after 2020 is in our rearview mirrors.
I wrote this one at the start of the pandemic here in the U.S. as we were all beginning to realize that we’d be working from home for some length of time. My three simple steps focus on those aspects of management that I feel are most critical during any time: being clear about expectations and over-communicating. While none of us would have chosen to alter our working lives the way they have been altered in 2020, I do think we have all learned a great deal about how to better support and collaborate with each other when presence isn’t an option. Hopefully these lessons will stay with us even as we begin to work together in person again.
Our longtime board member Natalie Bickford wrote this post in July as the quarantine working life stretched on in her home base of the U.K. Natalie provided a great perspective on how increased work from home provided better life balance for so many employees – and how rather than begrudgingly offering work-from-home options for employees moving forward, employers should embrace these policies as ways to support the whole employee and become a place people truly want to work.
And…at long last…the moment you’ve been waiting for: our most-read post of 2020 is…
Over the years, The Workforce Institute has become known for our yearly survey on what percentage of employees plan to call out sick on the Monday after the Super Bowl here in the United States. It’s a fun and lighthearted way to get to an important conversation about the costs of unplanned absenteeism and what employers can do to minimize it. It’s also quaint to think back to a time when employees calling out sick the day after the Super Bowl was a top-of-mind concern…oh early-2020-us, we miss you!
Well, that’s a wrap on 2020 blog posts for The Workforce Institute! We had just under 100 blog posts this calendar year all thanks to our absolutely incredible board of advisors who constantly amaze us with their insight and wisdom. We know their posts speak directly to you, our readers, and we hope that in the course of your reading on our site this year something you read here helped give you a new perspective, feel better about a problem you were facing at work, or gave you sage advice and inspiration on how to be your very best working self.
We look forward to sharing more relevant, useful and inspiring content with you in 2021 and beyond – Subscribe here at the bottom of our homepage so you don’t miss any of it!
HAPPY NEW YEAR!