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Now is the time for your leadership

Four key tips to lead through the uncertainty of COVID-19

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You’re not alone if you’ve been buffeted by sudden waves of business changes, pressure to make quick decisions accompanied by an internal roller coaster ride of anxiety, confusion and worry in this rapid, evolving and complicated time.

As I coach clients while they manage the shift to remote work and evaluate some tough decisions without certainty, believe it or not, I see that most of us are either in a state of embracing or denying continuously changing conditions – be it at work, at home or in the community. 

Yet, it does present us with an opportunity to rise up, reposition and reconnect on a plan of action.

While we all know this situation will come to pass, here are a few personal and team coaching tips for you to create micro-wins in this increasingly VUCA (volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous) predicament.

Anticipate

To quote Denis Waitley on this, “There are two primary choices in life: to accept conditions as they exist, or accept the responsibility for changing them.”

When anticipating what’s next on the horizon, be it with your work, team or personal situation, ask the following:

“What’s working now that I need to expand?”

“What will I need next?” 

“How can I move in that direction?”

“What steps do I need to take?”

Evaluate

When thinking through certain scenarios, you might need to acknowledge your own personal discomfort in having to re-think and evaluate specific situations. 

Know that you’re not alone.

To reframe this discomfort, I want you to know that the first sign of personal growth is the feeling of discomfort itself! 

It’s because we don’t know what we are about to discover

As you evaluate multiple options, you might be presented with the reframe of an opportunity, one that could uncover your hidden strengths and possibly for the benefit of those around you. 

Some questions to consider include:

“What strengths do I need to embrace in this situation?”

“Who on the team can I call on for support?” 

“What are his / her / their signature strengths?”

“Who do I need to consider calling on that I would not have considered before?”

Decide

Understand that the gravitas of our current situation requires us to “un-freeze” from our state of shock toward swift decision making. 

How do we do that?

Make a decision!

By making a decision either with your coach or your team, rest assured that this action will allow for a release of pent up emotions. You will also reduce the ever greater risk of standing still as events continue to unfold.  As the ancient philosopher Laozi once said, “If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading.” 

To gain clarity and un-freeze, consider asking yourself these questions:

“What are the opportunities for supporting this decision?”

“What are the consequences of not accepting this decision? 

Repeat

Finally, the past can be a tool to take stock of key learning in predictable scenarios. While we have accumulated tremendous experience in our personal lives and careers, our past repetition in a previous environment does not equate to success when faced with increasing volatility such as we are in now.

If you do not see the results you thought would manifest, go back and repeat the Anticipate, Evaluate and Decide steps to uncover new learnings and remember to always pivot. 

It’s a continuous journey. Be courageous, and know that you have the capacity in you to leap forward. 

We will get through this together and it begins with YOUR leadership!

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