These are trying times for all of us. The health crisis followed by the looming economic crisis is unprecedented in our lifetime. While everyone knows that we must extend compassion and understanding to all. A lot of businesses are going to be impacted in the coming weeks and it will force us to re-think our business models as cash flow will be seriously impacted. While compassion is the rage, how do you run a business that needs money to sustain as employees have to be paid, rent is due, EMIs are looming and vendors are waiting in line to be paid. Each one of them have their own households to run. This is going to be the toughest time for leadership in the entrepreneurship space.
That being said, you can always choose the kind of leader you want to be. Sharing a few best practices that we have adopted and seen successful leaders around the world adopt that has helped them brave many a crisis. Pick any and all pointers:
Trust your team:
Trust your team with the challenges that your company is facing and you will be surprised how they respond. When you include your team in the think tank and make them part of the discussion, most will be empowered with the trust you show in them and they will surprise you with ideas.
Motivate & Inspire:
The team will look at you for inspiration so use all tried and tested and maybe some fun ways of motivating your team and keep the spirits up. A great way to get this done is leading by example. Keep yourself inspired, healthy and motivated and it will come through to your team as well.
Don’t withdraw into a shell and ghost on your team. Now more than ever your team needs to see you and communicate with you. They need to know you are around. With social isolation already doing a number on our minds, choose to regularly connect via technology with your team. Use video calls to make sure they see and hear you as much as you see and hear them.
Vent out. Being happy all the time will appear goofy and make you look off the rocker. Set aside some time with your senior leadership to just vent out. Encourage everyone to do so. But once the timer is up, roll up your sleeves and get cracking on the issues in as practical a manner as you can.
Emotional Quotient: Your EQ at this point needs to be at an all-time high. Your team members will be facing an unparalleled situation that they would not have faced before. Being at home or home alone will bring to the forefront issues that you might not have anticipated. Be the sounding board when you can but at no point should you overload yourself. Have your HR team actively involved in counseling and providing support to all team members and check upon them.
The team will look at you for direction. Gather around your best minds, create a think tank and come up with a possible direction that your company can take. Plan ahead. Let your team know you are working on it and will be prepared for every possible outcome that you can envisage. This will give your team immense confidence that you are working towards the survival of the company.
Be kind: Above all be kind and compassionate.
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