Strategic thinking is always important; it’s a critical foundation skill for effective leaders. But in crucible leadership moments like the present, it has outsized importance.
In our work at Insight Experience, we focus a lot on communication as a key lever of leadership. It’s never been more important than right now, when many are facing crucible moments in and outside their business.
Say what you will about the current crisis, it is clearly a crucible time for leaders. Not all leadership moments are created equal, and this one is huge. For most of us there has not been a more important time in our leadership lives. This is both good and bad news: it means the consequences of your leadership now will most likely have outsized impact in the future. How we each behave as leaders in these moments of fear and uncertainty, when our most basic human instincts crowd in, will be remembered long after the crisis is past. Like it or not, this will be part of your leadership legacy, so consider carefully the choices you make.
If there was ever a time a company and its leaders need deep financial acumen it is now. Many of us have experienced periods of financial turbulence in our lifetimes. Black Monday on October 17, 1987, the aftermath of September 11, and the Global Financial Crisis of 2007 and 2008 are some of the more memorable. But these events, as extreme as they were, pale in comparison to the current Coronavirus pandemic.
The last several days have been a whipsaw of adjustment for leaders and teams in organizations around the globe. The coronavirus pandemic has gone from casual remarks in pre-meeting chit-chat to disruption of supply chains, travel plans, work locations, childcare, and personal security in a blink of an eye.
We are living through a case study of crisis management for leaders. The coronavirus may have limited or may have significant impact on your business, but in either case, it’s taking major mindshare for employees and creating anxiety in organizations around the globe. Insight Experience teaches leaders how to communicate effectively. Normally we’re focused on accelerating business results or aligning complicated organizations or helping engage employees to deliver on a vision. We see and learn from the leaders we work with all year long about how challenging effective communication is even in the simplest of settings. An unprecedented, unknown concern like coronavirus makes communication that is heard and helpful even more difficult to achieve.
How to Keep your Leadership Healthy Through the Coronavirus Crisis The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is top of mind for everyone. While our first priorities are the health and safety of our employees and their families, we also need to manage the business impact. Travel bans and cost containment strategies are putting pressure on critical business activities, including employee development. Ironically this type of disruption can delay training programs at a time when employees and leaders need them most. The recent infectious outbreak only enhances the VUCA (volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous) nature of our work. Navigating the delicate balancing act of business as usual with crisis management will be far easier for leaders who can: