Leaders must inspire confidence during crisis.
For the first time in our world's modern digital age, a new virus has spread as fast as a viral social media post. At the time of writing this - there have been over 2 million cases of Coronavirus worldwide, killing almost 140,000 people.
The Covid-19 pandemic has caused every response, emotion, and reaction possible. We are all very well aware of the changes we've had to make in our personal and professional lives. The impact is sweeping, dramatic, and damaging.
While a vaccine is needed for the cure, there is another sickness that needs to be addressed very specifically, and with haste, in our corporate environments: Fear.
It's vital for leadership to inspire the strong confidence needed to keep staff and their
families at ease. Staff must know that their leadership has a foremost goal in mind to do their very best to mitigate impact, keep people safe, and very importantly - establish a plan for economic recovery.
What are the vital leadership strategies, to mitigate fear during a viral uncertainty?
Lead by example: The energy a leader brings to any environment - even in these widespread remote work conditions - is infectious. Culture starts at the top, and if leadership hasn't effectively quarantined their own emotions - the rest of the workforce is at risk for a compoundingly toxic scenario. Stay strong for your people, they'll never forget how hard you worked for them during this crisis.
Communicate clearly: Every day must be considered "day 0" given the complexity, uncertainty, and rapidly evolving conditions. In the Federal Government contracting market, we're seeing this play out big time, within our small business community On-site deliverables are common for GOVCON and the challenge for firms to adapt to a new system of staff coordination is tremendous. Add this to the compounding economic strain and physical distance, and we quickly see how important it is to deliver effective communication to continue serving the customer.
Deploy positive realism: Once you've demonstrated emotional self control and kept everyone highly informed - it's then time to inspire them to rise to the challenge at hand to pursue victory. Giving your people hope, is a strategy that too many in leadership overlook. Hope is the first step in creating a condition by which the mind can begin to process possible outcomes. When you do this, you are programming that supercomputer between your ears not to fall for everything negative that it hears. This cranial conditioning allows you to think under duress and pressure. Crisis management is a skill that can be learned through practice, but must be readily deployed by the leadership the moment a panacea of any flavor hits. If the management is spread thin - that's where hiring a firm like Trident Strategies comes in.
Fear is natural. Somehow we forgot that along the way. Must have been our obsession with how easy life became after the invention of the instant coffee latte.
There will continue to be tremendous challenges for companies and customers in the coming months ahead. There will be failure. There will be fear.
Here's the most exciting news though. This challenge is going to create a new breed of leaders and entrepreneurs who will inject cutting edge technological approaches into the seam of humanity's evolutionary drive to survive. It won't be easy, but success is not readily gained without great sacrifice.
You've heard about some amazing firms who rose during a recession. With the right partners and leadership strategies at the wheel, we'll come out on the other end - more resilient and successful than ever before.