Current situation across the globe due to COVID-19 demands a not-so-traditional approach to leadership. Gone are the days when being a good leader meant that you get to be in control in the office premises. Meaning of leadership has changed significantly and is more important than ever since most of your co-workers working from home need your support in every aspect. They really need your influence so that they feel motivated about the future and keep pulling off their best all the time.
That’s why it is truer than ever that leadership, as a skill must be cultivated to get the best results for your co-workers as well as whole organization.
Let’s learn the 6 most important things you need to follow in new working conditions to become an effective leader.
Lead the way, stick around and remember, Praise!
COVID-19 has forced us to adopt “work from home” arrangement. In huge likelihood, there might be times when your co-workers hit a wall while performing their duties. As an effective leader, show them how to do it. Let them work it out themselves after you’ve demonstrated it once and monitor closely on the progress by taking video calls. Stay involved and be open to guiding them. Offer constructive criticism when they make mistakes; also, praise them on the daily/weekly meetings once they accomplish the set goals.
Accept criticism, openly!
Just because you’re in a position of authority, doesn’t mean you aren’t prone to making mistakes. Leaders make mistakes as anyone else. An effective leader is always open to criticism and accepts mistakes with head held high. Even if you are working in hierarchical organizational structure, it is important to communicate to all stakeholders about your mistake and how are you going to solve the same. Make sure to attach timeline to everything.
Think Positive, Be Positive!
Almost everyone is feeling the stress since life has changed considerably due to COVID-19. As an effective leader, you need to learn the art of keeping others cheerful and in high spirits. Remember, it starts with you; when you stay positive, you will make it easier for them to work and not worry about unnecessary aspects. They will believe in you and your effective leadership methods.
To make sure your co-workers always stay on top of their work, you need to promote creativity. In your virtual meetings, emphasize on thinking creatively. If the ideas they come up with, can be used, be sure that you encourage the person to execute and implement the idea and give him/her due credit. Even if the ideas don’t work out, it will encourage different thinking and push people to come forward with their ideas and opinions. This will make your co-workers believe. And we really need the belief in these times.
Anger won’t help
With “work from home” as the new normal, an effective leader needs to master the skill of taking important decisions without any trace of anger. There will be crisis situations where you would have to react immediately. Naturally, some situations might flare up. It would not be wise to show your anger at your co-workers if they didn’t meet your expectation when you are not aware what they might be going through. Make sure to handle the situations calmly.
Since most of your team won’t be seeing each other these days, it is important to listen to others’ grievances and offer them help if you can. This will help you develop a better relationship with the co-workers and understand them better. Also, it is important to keep an element of emotion in your conversations so that others feel connected when they talk to you.
There might be many more skills and qualities that leaders will have to develop to reach the required effectiveness. But these 6 are the most vital for becoming an impactful leader in these testing times.
Remember, being a leader isn’t easy – but there are people constantly looking up to you and depending on you. It’s a responsibility that must be owned, not just learned!