HARDISON’S TIPS – JUNE 25, 2021-COVID Crucible for Crisis Leadership
As we stretch into our fifth month of COVID disruption, ask yourself how you feel about your company’s leadership. Do they have your confidence? Your loyalty? This pandemic has been make-or-break for many and the challenges reveal their true mettle. Whether you’re looking for a new job or debating jumping ship, look for these key crisis leadership traits.
- Strong communication. Prioritizing communication is more important than ever – whether your company is still working from home, furloughed or operating on a hybrid model, constant contact is key! In this ever-changing environment, leadership should be checking in with all in-person and remote employees on a weekly basis, at minimum. We’ve heard of leaders hosting group calls, sending out update emails and posting video status updates to keep everyone in the loop. A good leader will get creative to show that you are not forgotten. This is a particular area of growth for some leaders based on what we’ve heard recently.
- Transparency. Honesty in said communication is similarly vital – what good are all those words if no one can trust them? Strong leaders will be honest when they are uncertain and not promise too much. They know that it is better to share their goals and priorities and what they hope to gain by accomplishing them. Nothing is more motivating (and reassuring) in uncertain times than a clear sense of purpose and direction.
- Adaptability. Anyone trying to go about business-as-usual is fooling themselves. This global disruption is changing most aspects of how we do business – an adaptable leader is ready to shift away from infeasible services and towards new opportunities. The Copier Channel is particularly adept in this area and we’ve seen industry innovators jumping to provide solutions to new workplace problems. Leaders who want to survive and grow need to evolve their business models accordingly.
- Willing facilitator. As we saw in the last recession, burnout is a serious risk during stressful times. This goes double for a leader who tries to do everything themselves. A good leader delegates what they can to others and facilitates their success, sharing the load and the rewards.
- Future-focused. This mentality should permeate everything they do. A future-focused leader sets short and long-term goals with an eye towards growth. Whether that’s investing in employees to bring up future leaders, seeking out new people for fresh ideas or prioritizing innovation for new solutions, crisis leadership also means looking beyond the crisis for new opportunities.