We’re in the midst of one of the biggest disruptions of our lives. I’ve been a lifelong collector of failed (often hilarious) predictions and prophesies showing how uncertain life can be. As the old Yiddish adage reminds us, “Man plans, God laughs.”
It’s also been said that anyone peering into a crystal ball soon learns to eat ground glass. During a recent Navigating Change webinar, I outlined how we seem to be rewiring our world and how these turbulent times could be rebooting and re-energizing our organizations.
At risk of joining the swelled ranks of failed forecasters crunching on glass shards, here are my thoughts/hopes of the good that could emerge:
- Interconnected and Interdependent — it’s even clearer how much we need each other and must work together.
- Teamwork and Collaboration — we’re seeing that successfully getting through this crisis depends heavily on intertwined support systems.
- Hiding/Ignoring Bad News Leads to Disaster — what we don’t know can — and often does — hurt us.
- Openness, Transparency, and Trust — highly effective leaders foster a culture that welcomes and addresses “the brutal facts” — often touchy and difficult issues.
- “Relationship Capital” Pays Big Dividends — the “soft skills” of connecting, caring, and communicating give us healthy relationship accounts we can draw from during tough times.
- Rebalancing Virtual and Face-to-Face Work — online meetings and working from home can complement daily commuting and travel for increased effectiveness and better work/life balance.
- Separating the Vital Few from Trivial Many Tasks — an urgent crisis helps us reassess our overload of meetings, e-mails, projects, and daily tasks to focus on what really matters.
- Agility Determines Change Victims or Victors — highly effective leaders will emerge from this crisis reflecting on lessons learned and how to prepare for the next wave of change they’ll inevitably need to deal with.
Tomorrow we publish my April blogs in the May issue of The Leader Letter. This issue draws from the research and key points of my newly created Navigating Change: Leading in Turbulent Times webinar. My goal was to provide practical tips and techniques for leading in turbulent times. One section from this webinar is focusing on self-leadership with 9 ways to strengthen resilience. This is followed by suggestions for leading others with 13 ways to navigate through our stormy seas of disruptive change. Our May issue wraps up with a look at that vital component of dealing with change; trust. It’s incredibly difficult to bring teams and organizations together in a crisis without trust.
A Visitor’s Guide to Redwood National and State Parks explains, “Coast redwood trees can soar to more than 370 feet tall…redwood trees seldom fall over. Their shallow roots form an extensive system of intertwining threads that connect with the roots of neighboring trees, providing reinforcement against the powerful winds of winter storms.”
May you find a few tips and techniques to pull yourself and those you lead together to weather this storm.