4 Leadership Tips for Uncertain Times

This is week 3 of working from home for us at DAVIS.  Our new normal is still evolving…but let’s be honest it still doesn’t feel “normal.”  Although I must admit, my home office is coming along nicely! Each week I tweak a few things to make it more and more enjoyable! If you didn’t watch the intro video take a minute and check it out and let me know what you think.  As a leader, this certainly is a time that can test us!

Leading teams is difficult on a good day, but gratifying work. There’s a lot of content right now on leading remotely or leading through a crisis and I wanted to summarize what I’ve found useful and what I am doing!

  1. Be Human
    First off, it’s a weird time so be sure to have empathy!  People are scared and nervous in general right now.  As leaders we know we need to be strong, but there’s a difference between being strong and educating your team that you’re scared too. Remember not to let your emotions dictate your decision making.  Clearer heads prevail and emotion lowers intelligence.  So, when you are emotional, call someone, go for a walk, pet your dog and then tackle the problem with a “clearer” head! Most importantly encourage your teams to do the same.
  2. Win the Day
    What does a productive day look like?  Usually this is clear but times like this make it vague.  Imagine being someone new to your business and then walk it through with them.  Their normal day to day productivity might look different. How you judge what is a successful day has changed. It’s your responsibility as a leader to get out in front of this so your team is clear on what they can continue to do to make a difference.
  3. Learn Together!
    There is no playbook for today. Leverage the power of your teams and networks!  Things are evolving quickly, and you don’t want to let one interaction/event be your decision-making criteria.  As a leader, feedback mechanisms about what is happening on the front lines has never been more critical especially in a “sales” environment.  We’re hosting mini roleplay/feedback meetings a few times each week to educate ourselves but also share wins and losses and adapt our talk tracks constantly.  Also, as a leader you must observe and perform the same tasks as your front-line staff to truly appreciate what is going on and help them.
  4. Stay Positive and Realistic
    We don’t know when this will pass, but we do know it will pass. It’s how the world works.   Call it as you see it. Sometimes we expect things to get worse before they get better and our teams should know we see things for what they are.  However, we have a responsibility to remind folks that things will be better, usually better than they were before because that’s how things work.

The common theme in this is COMMUNICATION! Communicate regularly and often! As a leader this means listen! Let your team know how others are doing and get folks together! One of the positive highlights of this virus is how much we rely on other people.  When times are good, we forget all the little and big things that we rely on others to help or perform for us. I hate that it takes this type of an event to remind me…but as a leader it’s great to recognize that coming out on the other side of this stronger will require us to work together

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