Your ability as a Leader has likely not been tested to the extent that it is today. How you manage yourself and your team will have long lasting impact on your personal brand, your employees, your company culture and perhaps, even the viability of the company itself. I am providing you a list of FOUR things you can do right now, to ensure the best possible outcome for all parties in the short and long-term.
Be engaged. This is not a vacation. While some individuals will feel a slowing effect in their work, now is the time for you to be vigilant, helpful and to take appropriate actions. Listen and take notes during leadership calls. Watch your email and text messages to ensure you are familiar with the most recent communications from your company. Stay on top of what the government actions in your geography at a minimum. Process employee requests quickly. You don’t want a team member missing a paycheck because a time sheet has not been approved.
Be a resource. Do your best to stay on top of the actions your company is taking to protect its employees. Likely, your employees and peers are feeling overwhelmed with the amount of information they are receiving from within and outside the company. Be a resource for sharing and directing individuals (employees or peers) to this information. Call out services that have been added or changed so that the receivers of this information know where to focus their time when reviewing the information. If you have capacity, volunteer to participate on a committee, disseminate information or do whatever your organization asks that feels comfortable to you.
Conduct check-ins.Up your game in checking in on your team members. Don’t focus on their work productivity, focus on what else is going on in their lives that might require some flexibility or assistance from you, their supervisor. Many people who are working from home are also dealing with kids out of school or partners out of work which may mean they are late to a meeting or don’t immediately answer the phone. In addition, everyone is extra concerned over how their relatives are faring. Touch base regularly, understand what is happening in their lives outside of work and help them navigate these waters by offering as much flexibility as you can, given the circumstances.
Take care of you. You won’t be able to provide value to anybody if you are a frazzled mess. Take some time to grab some fresh air even if it is standing in front of an open window or sitting on the balcony or porch for a few minutes. Download an app to meditate or help calm your nerves. Limit your social media time so you are not creating additional angst for yourself. When you need supplies go for delivery or pick-up outside the store. Maintain the suggested social distance to avoid getting sick. Try to maintain a normal eating pattern and get creative in adjusting your exercise routine.
These unfortunate events provide you with an opportunity to step it up and to the extent you have the capacity, I hope you do take on some additional tasks or activities. You are needed now, more than ever.