How do you Lead now?
Your leadership is required now to help your people stay as stable as they can in this upended, unpredictable world. What you say and what you do is extremely important. You can help them.
A few summers ago, I had almost two liters of fluid in my pericardium sac. I was in a full-blown cardiac tamponade. It felt like a cross between drowning and suffocating. As the medical team whisked me down the hall for an emergency procedure, the attending cardio doctor was telling me to stop taking such short breaths. Was she kidding me? How can I breathe? I frankly thought I was doing a great job!
This humorous Bob Newhart YouTube video called “Stop it!” illustrates how telling people to “stop it ” is rarely, if ever helpful. You may be tempted to tell your people to “stop it.” Try meeting people where they are at, which will help them to breathe easier.
An Example is a COVID-19 Preparedness Team Training of helpful or unhelpful phrasing.
What we don’t want to say to our people:
Suck it up
You’ll be fine
Deal with it
Everything will be ok
This isn’t serious
You won’t lose your job
This shall pass
This doesn’t affect
The virus is not that big of a deal
You’re not the only one effected by this
You’re young, you’ll be fine
What we do want to be saying to our people:
We’re here for you
I know you’re afraid, let’s talk through it
How can I help?
How’s your family doing?
What is the hardest thing about this for you?
Help them breathe differently with compassionate connection – not by saying “stop it.” Millions of people around the world will need to breathe differently right now and you can help your people. Give them hope for tomorrow by leading them today.
Lead Individually and Corporately
Ask how are “you all” doing and ask how are YOU doing. Make it corporate and personal. This will help prevent team members from falling through the cracks. Some of them will need you to check in with them.
Be aware that even independent workers may need a little more attention now. Do a quick check in. Ask what they need. Lead in a way that makes sense to them.
Same Leadership, New Way
The Lord continually reminded Joshua to be strong and of good courage as he led the people to a new place. Joshua was a good leader. He didn’t rely on his strength. He placed his trust in God.
You know how to lead. The same skills that you’ve used in the past are the ones you will use now. Try using them in a new way. A lot is changing right now, except for you and your people. I believe in you and continue to support you as we all pivot on a moment’s notice. Breathe deeply, trust the Lord and His love for you and draw confidently from the skills and experiences He has given you.