Like you and millions around the globe, I feel the magnitude of our current situation in many ways, in particular, in my role as a Coach. My clients are amazing leaders and professionals who are in crisis mode like never before. I stand with them, by them and in support of them. Having personally led teams thru the Y2k, 9-11 and housing crises, I know too well that this is beyond turbulent. It requires every ounce of will and determination, trust and faith in yourself and those around you.
If ever there was a time to step up as a leader…it’s now. If ever there was a more unsettled and confusing time to be a leader…it’s also now. We are being tested and challenged like never before in modern history.
I completely understand how scary a time like this is. We have no playbook because this is different. During 9-11 we could see the devastation of the Twin Towers, the soot on the faces of thousands of New Yorkers, the fires and the horrific images that are associated with that tragedy. This enemy we face today is invisible, and it’s unsettling.
You are being called upon to make split second decisions with information that is, at best incomplete, and changing in an instant, and at worst, incorrect because it’s unclear who the experts are and what the latest update is. I see it and feel it deeply both in my heart and in my gut.
Your people, your teams, your boards, your clients, customers & families…and other key stakeholders like suppliers, vendors & colleagues are looking to you. The stakes are high and you need the courage to lead. You’re all in this together…and…at the same time, you’re feeling more alone than ever. Everyone is.
What choice but to Lead with courage, conviction and compassion? If not you, then who?
Starting today, I will provide timely and helpful tips to help you lead courageously and navigate these murky and uncharted waters. Follow along for regular Tips and Ideas on how to be the best Leader you can be.
1. Your Team: Working remotely or temporary layoffs are very isolating. Remote workers suffer from depression at higher rates because of it. Stay connected thru regular 1-on-1’s (via phone or video conference) and conduct weekly team calls (via phone or zoom) to keep people informed, answer questions, understand their concerns and state of mind, and provide reassurance and support.
2. Key Customers/Partners: These stakeholders are your lifeblood. Trust that they are more forgiving in a crisis and believe that humanity prevails. What they need is assurance: Assurance that you are doing as much as you reasonably can. That you’ll be there. That you will provide timely information and candor. This is an opportunity to further build and solidify relationships. They need to know that:
- You care. You are there; responsive & engaged. They will find comfort that you care enough to call and tell them what is going on.
- It’s NOT business as usual and while they would not or should not expect it to be, knowing you’re doing everything to keep things running will build credibility, and trust. These are foundational for any relationship – business or personal.
Underneath anger is fear. But until that’s clear to us…I mean really clear…we blame.
Blame is a way of dumping anger.
“Here. You take it.” Is essentially what the blamer is saying.
Most often, the receiver picks it up and throws it right back.
Now you have a blamer’s tennis match and the longer it lasts, the harsher it gets.
Back and forth. Back and forth.
There are no points for nastiness and no trophies for blamers who inflict pain. It lacks honor. It requires zero bravery, courage or skill.
The story you tell yourself is true, but only for you.
We see and hear everything through our own eyes and ears.
Our brain compares what we see and hear to what we expect. Then, our brain creates stories around every interaction we have.
We form an opinion, make judgments and the story we tell ourself becomes our truth. It’s our understanding of the world. Those stories become our belief… about a person, place or situation. It’s how we make sense of things.
When you buy lipstick at a big box store, you’ll likely pay under $10 for a well-known brand made in a manufacturing plant somewhere far away.
If you go to a posh department store you can buy a deluxe brand for under $50 – likely made in that same plant.
When Neiman Marcus and Christian Louboutin offer up a Rouge Matte Lip Colour in a beautiful black box, they’re not selling you a $90 lipstick. They’re selling memorable, significant and over-the-top-notice-me.
And if you really want to scramble your brain you can go to Amazon and buy a Maybelline, drugstore brand, lipstick for over $165. (Nope. That is not a typo.)
The important thing to know is that within a fraction of a percentage point, all lipsticks contain the same ingredients. It’s not about where you buy lipstick or how much you pay, It’s about the story we tell ourselves and what we believe.
In the drawer, is one lipstick really better than the other? Is there really a right choice? It depends….on what texture and color you like, your skin tone, what you’re wearing that day and where you’re going. Maybe even your mood.
We choose. And because there is no absolute ranking, ‘preference’ is different than ‘right’.
This applies to just about everything in life… including intimate relationship.
How we use language, choose our words, our tone of voice, the conversations we decide to engage in…and whether or not we bring our best selves to the table.
Having an open heart and being in sync with our partner is always a choice.