I have been talking about lately how uncertainty creates a leadership opportunity, or even better, uncertainty creates a ton of leadership opportunities! Leadership is a privilege. We also must understand the leadership reputations are made or lost during times of crisis. And in these times it is important to reaffirm and reinforce the privilege and responsibility of leadership. We do this by defining reality, share the real fears and anxieties, give hope, use common sense, keep people focused on what we can control not what we can not control, and lead with the utmost integrity.
Those are the 6 steps to leading in a time of crisis, so I ask each of you, review each of these 6 steps and it is never too late to formulate your plan to execute these 6 steps. Have you done this with your team, your family, your church, your group, or your friends? You don’t have to be the head coach, the CEO, the Lead Pastor, the President, the Supervisor, the Manager, the head of the Household. You can do this regardless of the position, and just simply talk openly and honestly in your conversations with those around you each day about those 6 steps. Now, if you are the “tabbed leader”, then executing these 6 steps will help establish your leadership reputation. And if you don’t do them, you may lose your leadership reputation in this time of crisis.
Opportunities to execute – for us at AMC, we do these things by “stepped up communication”. Anytime we get into challenging times, we go into an improved communication mode as we look to “get in front” of our people more than usual. We “get in front of our people” daily through a daily “5-minute meeting” Dr. Ty holds most every morning if possible at 7:45 am. We then also “get in front of our people” once a month for our most important vision, culture setting, and self-improvement meeting each month the first Monday of each month at 7 am. But, in our “step up” times, we get in front of them more be it physically at the clinic for more conversations, through more texts, more emails, just more overall communication altogether.
And it was in each of these moments we take the opportunity to ask people how they are feeling, are they ok, do they have any concerns. For me, I have had more opportunities to be in the clinic at 7:45am given event cancellations and a few yard restrictions, and we step up the “content” of these daily 5 minute meetings. The goal is to again, make sure everyone is “ok” and we show care for our people. We then also establish the reality followed by hope creation letting them know we will be ok, we will take care of you, we will pay you, we will continue to implement more steps and procedures to keep you and our clients healthy, we will help you in any way you may need, we will keep moving forward, and again, we will be ok and we will take care of you. They all know we value people over profits, and we will take care of our people, that is just what we do! And they all know it! Have you made that clear with your people?! They are dying for you to talk to them, to address them, to give them hope along with embracing the reality and the truths around us.
Because the reality is, at the end of the day your responsibility is to your people, your family, those you lead, to your customers, and to our awesome society at large. That is where your responsibility lies and if you don’t make good on those responsibilities, that is where you lose the privilege to lead.
Connect with your people, show them and tell them you understand their fears and anxiety, and give them reasons to have hope and confidence we will all get through this! Engage them, motivate them, help them stay focused and composed, be the reassuring voice, be the beacon of light, be the stable take action now leader. Your reputation depends on it!!