6 Strategies to Lead Your Team in Challenging Times | The Corona Virus Impact

It is understandable that these tough times of Corona Virus have led the entire world to isolation and social distancing. This is absolutely NOT what human sustainment would like for its well-being. However, the world has to move on and if we become proactive and mindful in finding ways to best navigate these turbulent times, it can turn into our favor. For most leaders, the challenge is to courageously manage their teams effectively during such times. 

Here are some strategies and tips to implement:

1. Recognize and Reiterate Your Sphere of Influence: Recognize and let your team know that you will continue to do what is possible and feasible in these current challenging times. This might require re-prioritizing, reorganizing, and entering into new ways of working. It is a learning ground for everyone. Apply the successful mind-strategies.

2. Communicate More: Isolation and social distancing can cut down a lot of communication. When most people do not feel good, they tend to communicate less. As a leader, it is important to not get into this trap of less-communication. Rather, communicate more with your team and colleagues. Let them know of any changes, progress, office protocols and address their questions timely. If your teams are working from home, then leverage technology like Skype, Google Meet, Zoom Meetings, etc. to stay in touch and have those connection-points in place. Ask for regular feedback.

3. Encourage and Ignite the Team Spirit: Such challenging times tend to lower the team spirit in general due to social distancing and a lack of motivation. As a leader, encourage team members or colleagues to switch on those cameras and come virtually face-to-face. Just like you would talk to them in your office lounge informally. Take advantage of this virtual opportunity and create a 15-20 minute "Virtual Coffee-Time". 

4. Create More Psychological Safety Through Trust and Resources: Psychological safety gets a big hit for employees as they feel more vulnerable and at the edge of everything . It is common to have fears take over their minds in such turbulent times. These fears include questions and statements running constantly in their heads:

  • Will I be penalized for not being on Skype every second that I am working from home?
  • Do I need to send constant e-mails to ensure that my boss and colleagues trust me that I am still working from home?
  • What will my boss or colleagues think if...
  • Will I be fired, if I happen to get sick?
  • How will I pay my expenses if I get sick?

....and  many other fears and questions will clog the minds of many people.

As a leader, it is important to address these fears in advance and reiterate them frequently. Create a trusting environment, where people's unique circumstances are recognized and acknowledged, and feasible flexibility is provided to all. Open the the doors of communication as much as possible. Provide people the access to resources, so that they can self-help and not depend upon permissions and grants for every single thing. This is the time to empower them and demonstrate a culture of trust and equity.

5. Encourage Innovation and New Ideas: Adversity always highlights the gaps and loop holes in any situation. However, it also brings the greatest opportunities to be innovative and invites newer ideas into the productivity arena. Since these times do not run "business as usual", encourage your team and colleagues to be more innovative in their practices. It might involve usage of technology in creative ways or simply any sort of unlearning to relearning the innovative productivity. Collaborate on digital platforms and do be open to work differently. Again, empower others to come forward with new ideas, brainstorm and implement the new best practices.

6. Learning Never Stops:  As much as we are learning so many things in our own contexts during these tough times, it is always important to keep our mental capacities sharpened. Learning is one of the best ways to do that. We recognize that we can't come together in a classroom-setting. So what? We have e-learning in this 21st century! Woo hoo! It is time to leverage your e-learning resources in these times. There are so many online resources to continue your learning - of course, you have learningcups.com and others like Udemy, edX, Coursera, Linkedin and what not. Suit yourself and tap into the best of e-learning resources.

If you'd like any virtual learning support or coaching support, don't forget to contact us at ledxlearning.com. We would love to partner with you and support you.

Shout-out to all leaders - go ahead and implement these simple and effective strategies and don't forget to keep following your Leadership Rituals, no matter what!

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Sahil Sharma
Talent, Learning & Leadership Development Professional | Certified Leadership Coach

For consultation and services, contact us at www.ledxlearning.com

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