Some people are more suited to crisis leadership than others. Many hunker down and hope they make it through. Others are bold and dynamic, always driven to stay a step ahead of events.
But throughout the spectrum, there is one aspect of crisis management that no one is talking about. Whatever your approach, you must stay aware of your people.
What’s happening today is effecting every person on your team at a deep level. And if you want to stay successful as a leader, you need to address those changes.
Here are some of the ways your people are likely reacting:
Some go into deep into action mode. Many people think that if they stay busy and are in constant motion, they won’t have to address what is happening around them. So they go into action mode. Some of my clients are now working 16-hour days just to keep moving.
Some are angry and don’t even know it. People may be feeling frustrated—about change, about uncertainty—unaware that underlying that frustration is anger. Anger happens when frustration isn’t being addressed. A massive crisis that changes nearly every aspect of life with no clear end in sight is a perfect example of a situation that can cause deep-seated anger.
Many are mourning what used to be. People are likely to be mourning their old lives and wishing things could go back to what used to be. Some may be grieving for long-awaited events, family gatherings and celebrations that have been canceled. Others may have lost a friend or family member. When people are grieving, emotions such as guilt, despair, fear and anxiety are common.
Most are reflecting on their lives. Crisis often triggers inner turmoil, because it takes away the noise of everyday distractions and gives people a clear look at their life from a new perspective. They may be asking themselves, Am I where I need to be? Is this what I thought I would become? Is this giving me the joy I was looking for? And the answers may change their future direction.
If you aren’t recognizing what is happening to your people and communicating with empathy and understanding, you may be facing a bigger crisis within your organization than you realize. Leading in a crisis is not about just having an action plan and implementing it for success. It’s about acknowledging your people and accepting that they’re likely to be going through things that will take them some time, and maybe help, to work thorough.
As a leadership coach, I have seen countless organizations in crisis, and I know the price of ignoring its human dimension. if you want to keep your most talented and capable people, address the issues they’re struggling with.
Lead from within: Crisis management is not only about having a plan for the future; it is recognizing your people for who they are and what they need from you as a leader.
#1 N A T I O N A L B E S T S E L L E R
The Leadership Gap
What Gets Between You and Your Greatness
After decades of coaching powerful executives around the world, Lolly Daskal has observed that leaders rise to their positions relying on a specific set of values and traits. But in time, every executive reaches a point when their performance suffers and failure persists. Very few understand why or how to prevent it.
Additional Reading you might enjoy:
- 12 Successful Leadership Principles That Never Grow Old
- A Leadership Manifesto: A Guide To Greatness
- How to Succeed as A New Leader
- 12 of The Most Common Lies Leaders Tell Themselves
- 4 Proven Reasons Why Intuitive Leaders Make Great Leaders
- The One Quality Every Leader Needs To Succeed
- The Deception Trap of Leadership
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Of Lolly’s many awards and accolades, Lolly was designated a Top-50 Leadership and Management Expert by Inc. magazine. Huffington Post honored Lolly with the title of The Most Inspiring Woman in the World. Her writing has appeared in HBR, Inc.com, Fast Company (Ask The Expert), Huffington Post, and Psychology Today, and others. Her newest book, The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness has become a national bestseller.