COVID-19 and Workplace Psychology

7 min readMay 24, 2021

By Saswat Pattanayak

Workplace psychology following the pandemic is one of special consideration for a diverse society. Impacts from any form of mass upheaval and confusion, or from social disturbances that get noticed in the wake of a health crisis, are felt across workplaces. Covid-19’s multi-pronged footprints that include massive unemployment, seasonal employment as well as the shifting reliance on remote work, have resulted in the need for assessments that go well beyond studying of industrial labor relations.

In the US, cultural representations and ethnic identities vie for space. Gender expressions remain varied and special accommodations related to disabilities are expected. Those are among the many salient features of workplace demographics and priorities during most of the years. Workplace diversity has always remained the core strength of a labor sector that demands adequate representations from the mosaic of social locations comprising the immediate American society. Small businesses typically locate themselves in the communities they serve and over the years, even big corporations have been pressurized to become inclusive and equitable.

Following Covid-19 however, the challenges to workplace diversity have been numerous and extraordinarily incongruous. Beyond the economic slump that has altered the way market economy generally reacts, I will outline some of the more pressing aspects that are shaping up individual and organizational responses following this health crisis.

Bereavement — Never in recent history has there been such an acute need to understand collective grief. With easily a majority of people having suffered either direct losses of family members or of those that they have come to know, there is suddenly and predictably a shortage in knowing who to reach out to. It’s an atypical situation where proverbially, the counselors are seeking counseling. With workplaces increasingly going remote, the necessary human connections which enable the grieving ones to reach out to colleagues in tangible ways, have also been sacrificed.

Bereavement always had its place in a workplace — from time to time, an employee would deliver news of a personal tragedy, which then would be acknowledged with both sympathy and empathy. But mass deaths hardly ever became…


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