Not a big fan of taking other’s quotes, but saw this one from Simon Sinek, & it hit the nail on the head w what I’m hearing, daily, from employees from all diff industries, recently.
There’s a global pandemic happening. Ppl want to feel psychologically safe. Ppl have a NEED to know that others appreciate them & care about them; yes even managers from their offices, at a time when so much is up in the air.
I get that no one can guarantee outcomes in uncertain times – whether there will be layoffs, furloughs, % reductions in salaries, goals that change, etc.
Those decisions usually happen at the very very top, are closely guarded until they have to be communicated, & most managers, no matter how high ranking, are in the same boat as their team members, waiting to be told how the next month, 3 months, etc. will “look.”
This does NOT mean, that managers should just coast, take their foot off the pedal, exchange weekly pleasantries & just hold tight till things play out.
Now more than ever, the EQs of managers matter. There’s a big difference between – “hey just checking in, you matter” – a pleasantry…& “hey, would love to talk w you, find time to get on the phone/zoom, hear about you, your family & just check in & talk abt how we ALL are feeling, bc it’s challenging for everyone.”
Vulnerability from managers is key right now. It should be always, but especially now. I’m not exaggerating when I say that the most common comment I get from employees, since corona started, is something to the effect of: well my manager seems safe & fine bc we get a wkly email to our group, & they’re acting business as usual, just virtually. You wouldn’t know that they’re dealing w this too.
Yes leaders need to provide direction & be a source of strength, but vulnerability does not mean you aren’t strong. It means you’re human.
Love what I’m hearing from some managers who are saying – they’re using this time to really get to know their team members on a more personal level. That’s beautiful. How it should be. If you lead, please take this time to lead thru connection & vulnerability. Your employees need your heart.