Crisis Time Equals Leadership Opportunity
Now is the time when leaders’ legacies are formed!
I just participated in a wonderful video conference hosted by Patrick Lencione’s company, The Table Group. Patrick has written or co-written eleven books focused on teamwork, organizational health, and managing people, including “Five Dysfunctions of a Team.” I highly recommend these books and The Table Group’s teachings.
I heard some very powerful concepts on the video conference worth sharing. Since Braveheart Sales Performance focuses very precisely on sales teams and revenue growth, here are ones that can be applied to the sales side of an organization by managers. These concepts are especially important with all the disruption caused by health concerns occurring in the country and world.
People Need to Hear from Their Leaders
Now is the time to be more present, more consistent, more of a “rock.” We know that leaders do NOT have all the answers and there is a great deal of uncertainty, which is exactly why leaders must not hide. Even without all the answers, the individuals on your team need to hear from you.
In this world of remote everything, it is even more critical to be present and in touch. Have more meetings. Shorter and tighter, but more frequent meetings.
A great idea from the call was to conduct not just check-in meetings every morning but checkout meetings late in the day. Recognizing that people may be working 24/7 now because they don’t leave the office to go home, it is probably important to have an end of day brief meeting to let everyone know the day is winding down and to celebrate any little successes.
Vulnerability Builds Trust
While most leaders are accustomed to having the final say or all the answers, now is a great time to show vulnerability. This will in turn build trust.
Nobody has all the answers right now. We just don’t know what is going to happen with the virus, with the economy, or with our companies. It’s okay to be human and uncertain.
Now is also a great time to encourage input and ideas from everyone on the team. Set the tone. This isn’t just part of engaging more with your team, it’s having them engage more as well.
It’s really a good time to kick the habit of being the person with all the answers. When this crisis is over, your whole team will be stronger because you did.
Rally the Team
Since you don’t have all the answers anymore, how about using this time to embark on a temporary rallying cry? This is another opportunity to get the whole team engaged. Create focus on one item to rally behind. It will calm anxieties and bring inner peace if everyone has a common cause.
Here are some ideas. Rally to become the most successful sales team to conduct virtual meetings with clients or prospects. Or rally behind providing the most necessary support to clients to help them get through the crisis. Or it could be ensuring that every single client is touched with resources to help them.
Whatever the rallying cry is, have the team agree on the focus and what the key levers are that will guide behaviors. Then remind, reinforce and RALLY.
Five years forward, people will remember what their leader did and said during this crisis. Now is the time to make your mark as a leader.
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