C S Radhika, General Manager at United India Insurance, reveals how covid has transformed the work culture:
Ravi Lalwani: How is job satisfaction among employees at United India Insurance? Has it increased or decreased in recent times?
C S Radhika: Covid has taught us much more than we can ever expect to learn in one lifetime. It taught us to value everything that we have at hand because nothing was in our control during those testing times. General insurers were declared as frontline workers and we were out there every single day in blood and skin. This I believe fostered a sense of responsibility in most of our workforce who willingly took up the task and we could see a great increase in job satisfaction.
It showed a multi-fold increase in customer satisfaction as well. Be it work from home concept or the innovative marketing strategies we had to adapt to retain retail customers or the digital challenges we encountered in the initial days, there was a lot of newness and first times involved, which kept people’s enthusiasm level on a higher note. Also, respect for government servants in the eyes of the family grew manifold after seeing the amount of pressure we take daily.
Is the trend the same for younger, middle age and older employees? is it the same for men and women?
People are unique and hence their perspectives, but the overall trend seems to be similar across industries. Thanks to lockdowns and hybrid WFHs, with all the extra time that was available to ponder about life, youngsters seem to want to explore their fullest potential in all possible facets and hence this 9-5 job seems a little unappealing to them. While older people who had enjoyed the comforts of being with family and grandkids feel it’s time, they take a break from this routine and settle down into early retirement and pursue their passions. The middle-aged folks, our future pillars, who missed the social circle at the office the most, got a forcible break from routine which they have well utilized as can be seen from umpteen ideas that are pouring through. I feel the value of women at home has been well recognized by the entire household now (during and post covid) and that boost in ego is well reflected in greater productivity in the workplace as well.
In which areas have employee expectations changed the most? Give examples of how your organization is increasing job satisfaction among employees.
Mostly preference for working from home is the striking expectation that’s a by-product of covid. Wanting a nearer-to-home posting, feeling the need to be given individual importance through regular one on ones like in private companies, wanting more job rotations and exciting challenges, need to be digitally trained/competent are all the various other changing trends that we observe. Being a PSU with service as the topmost priority, we have our limitations to strike a balance between meeting employee expectations and maintaining productivity. We are trying to make our work culture more employee-centric by trying to accommodate genuine and feasible requests. We are trying to go fully digital to ensure lesser travel and to enable remote handling of vital jobs from anywhere in India.