Tips to Keep Leadership Alive and Well in Uncertain Times
COVID-19 Leadership Series [PART 1]: Tips to Keep Leadership Alive and Well in Uncertain Times
Produced by Allied Solutions | March 24, 2020
View Part 2 here: The Importance of Relationship-Building in Virtual Environments
View Part 3 here: 3 Considerations for Virtual Training to Engage Staff & Increase Sales
Between trying to keep employees safe and healthy, keep business rolling, and offer members support during this trying time, there is no shortage of work needing to be done in this coronavirus pandemic. How can you keep your employees feeling supported and motivated during this time?
The short answer: leadership.
It may feel like your role as a leader is being challenged, but it is more important than ever to be a guiding light for your staff. Many employees are scared, confused, and worried about what this means for their job – so trying to make yourself available to them and offering some clarity, however you can, can help to provide peace of mind and answers at a time when it is needed most.
While you may also be feeling scared and worried, on top of your attention being pulled in different directions, it’s important to work in the time to: 1) proactively communicate to your team and 2) make yourself available to offer direction, answers, and support to each of your staff members.
Here is a quick list of recommendations to help you sustain strong leadership practices in the midst of COVID-19:
Remote Coaching Tips:
The reality of the current situation has led many employees to work offsite. Here are some tips for keeping up strong leadership practices when some or all of your team is working remotely:
- Ensure your team knows how to get in touch with you at all times.
- Communicate with your team if there are times you will not be available.
- Be clear about expectations for your employees, i.e. what their job priorities are, how they should be communicating with you and the rest of the team, and how/when they are needed.
- Find opportunities for peer-to-peer sharing, such as group chats each morning so people feel less isolated and are supported by the entire team. This provides opportunities to ask questions and share encouragement.
Leadership Resource Allotment:
Many employees are currently dealing with adjusted work priorities, environments, and schedules. Given that fact, it is as important as ever to offer hands-on support and leadership to your employees. Here are some creative ways to make yourself available to your staff, in spite of current events:
- Try to offer interaction every day even if simply a casual "hello, how are you" type of contact.
- Schedule “walk-in hours” for your employees to pop in – virtually or physically – to express concerns or ask questions.
- Set aside quick meetings with each of your employees to talk thru expectations and concerns.
- Schedule at least one all-team meeting to bring everyone together to discuss roles and responsibilities, and report on any strategic updates.
- If needed, facilitate any logistical needs, i.e. coordinating any needed technology or communication tools.
General Leadership Best Practices:
It’s more important than ever to do what you can to help sustain an engaged, productive and happy team. Here are some practical strategies to help you be the leader your employees need – now and in the future:
- Continue to advocate for peer-to-peer knowledge sharing and communication, despite a remote setting.
- Leverage digital tools to expand access to team and individual training and communication.
- Examples include online learning portals, virtual webinars, and video enabled meeting portals.
- Consider video conferencing so employees can visually see their supervisor as a means of connection. It’s important to recognize some employees may not be comfortable sharing their home environment, so you you may want to offer one-way video (with just your camera turned on) in those circumstances.
- Help employees identify or rework their goals and priorities during this time. If needed, setup connections with the sole purpose of discussing and supporting top priority objectives.
- Encourage employees to discuss anything they are struggling with to offer support with meeting and/or reworking these objectives.
- Actively listen to your team members and verbally acknowledge their concerns to help ensure they feel heard and supported.
- Adapt your leadership approach and communication style to mesh with the individual styles and preferences of each of your staff members.
Everyone’s work has been significantly impacted by COVID-19, but the need for strong leadership has not changed. In fact, many employees need a leader they can turn to, now more than ever.
Click here to read the blog: "Fostering Happy, Motivated Employees through a Culture of Learning."
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About Allied Solutions
Allied Solutions, LLC is one of the largest providers of insurance, lending, and marketing products to financial institutions in the US. Allied Solutions uses technology based products and services customized to meet the needs of 4,000 clients along with a portfolio of innovative products and services from a wide variety of providers. Allied Solutions maintains over 15 regional offices and service centers around the country and is a subsidiary of Securian Financial Group, Inc. Allied Solutions has tools and resources that can help you keep an eye on the potential areas of impact, protect against collateral losses, and stay on top of any new events, bulletins, and regulations as they happen.
Content in the blog posts are the opinion and views of the writer, and don't necessarily reflect the opinions or views of Allied Solutions.