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Support and Stay Afloat: Empowering Your Employees During Life's Curveballs While Keeping Your Business Strong

By Mrs. Shay Cook, CEO & Founder of Crusaders for Change, LLC (C4C) Accredited Financial Counselor® & Financial Fitness Coach®

As a business owner, you understand the delicate balance of running a successful operation. But life throws unexpected curveballs at everyone, including your employees. A car repair, a child's illness, or even a fun surprise trip can create financial strain and disrupt work schedules. When these situations arise, how can you best support your team while keeping your business afloat?

Here's the good news – supporting your employees through life's unexpected events is not only kind – it's good business. Studies by the American Psychological Association show that financial stress can significantly impact employee productivity, engagement, and absenteeism. Conversely, offering support and financial wellness programs can lead to:

  • Increased employee morale and loyalty

  • Reduced absenteeism and turnover

  • Improved focus and productivity

  • Enhanced employer brand and talent attraction

So, how can you put this knowledge into action? Here are a few evidence-based tactics to empower your employees when they need it most.

Financial Wellness Programs

  • Partner with a financial wellness provider to offer workshops on budgeting, saving for emergencies, and debt management. This proactive approach equips employees with the skills to navigate financial challenges.

  • Consider offering financial counseling services (either in-person or virtual) to provide personalized guidance for employees facing specific financial difficulties.

Flexible Work Arrangements

  • Remote Work: Implement flexible location options with remote work. This allows employees to manage personal emergencies without sacrificing work hours.

  • PTO Banks: Consider offering paid time off (PTO) banks with separate categories for vacation, sick leave, and personal leave. This grants employees more control over their time when unexpected needs arise.

  • Flextime: This allows employees to adjust their start and end times within a certain framework, as long as they complete their required hours. This can be particularly beneficial for employees with commutes, childcare responsibilities, or other morning or evening commitments.

  • Job Sharing: This involves splitting a single full-time position between two part-time employees. This can be a great option for skilled individuals who may not require a full-time workload or those seeking a better work-life balance.

  • Flexi-place: This allows employees to work from a variety of locations, including a home office, co-working space, or even a client site. This can benefit employees who find a change of scenery helps with productivity or those who live far from the office.

  • Compressed Workweek: This allows employees to complete their full-time work hours in fewer days, typically by working longer hours each day. For example, a compressed workweek might involve working four 10-hour days instead of five 8-hour days.

  • Asynchronous Work: This involves a work style where communication and collaboration happen outside of traditional business hours. This allows for greater flexibility for employees in different time zones or with personal obligations that fall during the workday.

Emergency Assistance Programs

  • Establish an emergency assistance fund where employees can apply for low-interest or no-interest loans to cover unexpected expenses. This can ease financial burdens and prevent them from turning to high-cost payday loans.

  • Employee assistance funds are created with a pool of money funded by the company, employee contributions, or a combination of both. Employees facing financial hardship can apply for grants to cover unexpected expenses like car repairs, medical bills, or utility shutoffs.

  • Explore offering discounted childcare options or resources for after-school programs. This can be a game-changer for parents facing unplanned school closures or childcare disruptions.

Knowing their employer cares for their well-being boosts employee morale and loyalty. Employees are more likely to feel valued and appreciated, leading to increased job satisfaction. When employees are financially stressed, they may be more likely to miss work or look for another job. Programs like these can help mitigate these risks by providing a safety net during difficult times. Offering emergency assistance programs demonstrates your commitment to employee well-being and can make you a more attractive employer to top talent.

Open Communication

  • Foster an environment where employees feel comfortable discussing their personal challenges with managers. This allows for early intervention and potential solutions to minimize disruptions.

  • Communicate your commitment to employee well-being openly and transparently. This fosters trust and strengthens the employer-employee relationship.

Remember, every little bit counts. Even small gestures of support can significantly impact your employees' well-being. By implementing these tactics, you create a work environment that allows your team to thrive both personally and professionally, benefiting not only your employees but also your business as a whole.

Crusaders for Change is Here to Support Your Business & Your Employees 

Our Accredited Financial Counselors® offer confidential consultations to address individual needs, helping employees manage unexpected expenses, student loans, and plan for major life events. Crusaders for Change (C4C) also offers interactive workshops that educate your employees on budgeting, debt management, saving for emergencies, and long-term financial planning. This empowers them to make informed financial decisions.

By equipping your employees with financial knowledge and personalized guidance, C4C helps them achieve financial security. This translates to a significant reduction in stress, leading to increased focus, productivity, and overall job satisfaction. When employees feel financially secure, they're less likely to experience stress-related absences or seek additional employment to cover financial gaps. C4C's programs can contribute to a more stable and committed workforce.

When you take the proactive approach to supporting your employees during challenging times, you can ensure that your small business continues to thrive while fostering a loyal and dedicated team. 

Don't let unexpected life events disrupt your business success. By partnering with C4C, you can equip your employees with the tools and knowledge they need to achieve financial security, leading to a happier, healthier, and more productive workforce.

Contact Crusaders for Change today and discover how we can customize a financial wellness program to fit your company's unique needs.

C4C also works with local, state, and federal government organizations as a certified woman-owned, minority-owned, military spouse-owned small business.


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