PEOPLE always come first!
Businesses are built and run by people. As a C-level leader, losing the trust and confidence of your people during a crisis can create additional serious challenges and make your current crisis even worse, and more.
How you treat your people, especially in times of crisis, will be remembered for a long time. Here are some recommendations:
- Transparency and timely communication are always appreciated, whether the news is good or bad.
- Hone and know your message so you can communicate it clearly, consistently and constantly. Consider your total audience and keep it simple and truthful when deciding how to deliver it…don’t use unnecessary jargon some may not understand.
- Deliver bad news with some kind of credible plan for how your organization will move forward and specifics on what you need from your people to make that happen.
- If the plan will take more time to develop, don’t wait to communicate. Let your people know that and what they should be doing while the plan is being developed.
- DWYSYWD (Do What You Say You Will Do!), but don’t say you will do things you can’t.
- Be visible, available, approachable, and open to the input of others, even if it needs to be through video conferencing, the telephone, text or email. Showing that you are available and open to input, shows respect. And, you may just get some better ideas than you currently have in mind.
- Already off on the wrong foot? Be authentic, apologize, and adjust your communications strategy!
- You can’t lead others if you can’t lead yourself! Right now, during the Coronavirus (Covid-19) crisis, there are plenty of great posts, blogs, articles, and activities on the internet (and through other sources) that are focused on helping you get through this crisis by keeping you safe and improving both your physical and mental health.
Mike Sayre has successfully piloted businesses through difficult times of crisis for over 20 years – as a CEO, President & COO, CFO, and/or Board Director. He is currently an independent executive leadership consultant working through Civilis Consulting and the Innovative Leadership Institute, trusted partners inspiring and enabling perpetual innovation, evolution, and growth in leaders and their businesses.