The C-Crisis has, for all good reasons, got us ‘squeezed’ in some way or other. Be it that I see it as a dad at home or a son distanced from family or a leader in the market place, it surely has impacted us in some way.
From an organisational perspective, hoping for the best is not looked upon as something positive! We leaders are called to plan for the worst in order to be ready, assuming the situation will last much longer or get worse.
Many of us have been working from home for 2 months or more. Some of us maybe feeling stressed because there’s no light at the end of the tunnel and keeping this to myself will surely not help!
Can I learn to frame the situation I am currently facing? If I need to vent, is there anyone I can reach out to? Does my family understand the ‘real’ situation of what I am experiencing? What can I do to recharge when most of my usual outlets (church, friends, outdoors) are not available?
What Experts & Literature Says
Simply said, “This is a period of great uncertainty”, “As a manager, you aren’t sure what you’re supposed to do and how you are supposed to do it”. “How you perceive stress and, how well you are able to adapt to and navigate through it is the quality of your leadership”. “Frustration and worry will be a hard experience for you” and, “You will feel stuck”. “Reflect on your values”, “Focusing on what is truly important in your life and your work”. “Keep your sense of purpose alive”, “Demand has gone way up, so scale up and address the larger need”. This is just a few comments and it goes on and on and I guess we can write books on this!
A crisis always brings about the ‘Real You‘! This embraced my conscience, I reminded myself that I must be a role model of Strength and Confidence. I am certain that this energy comes from the One Above, whom I place my entire Hope and Trust in.
We are not ready for a crisis! We are now very much in the midst of it, when individuals or families are ‘locked-in’, when all are stressed with fear, when income is reduced or stopped, where one has to begin to live a life that one was never used to, when so much of uncertainty prevails, my primary need is to be ‘Human’ and feel and understand emotions like never before. I am called to speak the truth in love, share the bad news with concern, keep the spirits high, understand emotions and balance all needs in a manner that we have never dealt with in the past.
In Search Of Support
If I am experiencing anything, I cannot allow my team members be given the slightest doubt that I am living in fear. Neither can I share my inner fears of what is to be, that I have no control of. Social Media is full of assumptions, analysts will come up with various theories and yet, simple facts have to be dealt with! As a leader, I am very much aware for how long I can sustain the organisation without any income, it’s simple arithmetic and simple logic.
For me to deal with this requires my search for inner peace through my Faith and the Word of God I believe in. I must also use this time to connect with Family and Friends, Peers and Mentors, those who can also help balance things out objectively and help stay positive through the turmoil. Bottling up will only create an explosion! Staying calm is the need of the hour! Anxiety will take me no where, I must know how to manage this!
Basic Principals Practiced
Many suggestions are made, we need to understand the present. How have I been able to contribute in these uncertain times?
- Do I know that people are humans, that they have anxieties and fears and that we must reach out to them with love?
- Do I understand that the circumstances each one is experiencing is not documented in any policy manual and that I must treat them as if they are new-born infants?
- Have I had Role Model’s from whom I have learned and received and heard and seen examples that can be meaningful? Can I practice these things with sincerity?
- Do I understand that I must celebrate with those hurting at any given opportunity and bring about some laughter?
- Do I have the ability to express contentment, accept the situation that is beyond my control and look forward to what opportunities will unfold in the New Normal and look with hope to the New Reality?
The Normal (Past)
Every leader’s imagination has been ‘suppressed’ due to the present circumstances! It is no more the normal we are used to enjoying. This is therefore leading to ‘bottling up’. Many leaders are expected to and are anticipating to resume business with a ‘Bang’ and return to normal levels. Leaders are challenged as to why the last 60 days in lock-down has no revenue generated. A leader who generates no revenue is a burden to the organisation. Leaders who are blunt about the reality of the situation and express hope for the future are not valuable.
‘Hope’ in my creator come to me naturally! I am able to cross my fingers and hope for the best He will provide me with. To have hope or ‘hope for the best’ means that I must know God. Why? Because God is my hope and for me to live a life of hope is to know the object of my hope!
The New Normal (Present)
Governments and the business sector will come out with their own sets of rules. What would be most important is as to how each one navigates through this.
Some are not certain, some do not know what to expect and some are anticipating to go back to becoming normal, even at the risk of neglecting the dangers the virus has on humanity.
As we begin to explore this ‘New Normal’, will organisations re look at their purpose? Will the Vision change if the New Normal will change our focus? Does a crisis have to change the direction of the organisation or must they remain stronger than every before, because focus must remains the same?
What happens to company ‘Values’? Have we used the crisis to honestly live our values? Have we ‘establish mutual respect and trust with one another’? Have we ‘genuinely cared for people’? The answer to these questions will tell us of where are future will take us.
The New Reality (Future)
“Where there’s hope, there’s life. It fills us with fresh courage and makes us strong again.”
— Anne Frank
There is always hope, there is always a future! We are required to be encouraged and assured of the future. Learning from past experiences and from this crisis helps me to work backward and prepare myself for the New Reality with utmost confidence!