Leading Others is the Same In Some Respects
Leading others is the same as leading teams face-to-face with many of the same questions:
Did you really need to have that meeting?
Could it have been better handled as an email?
These questions used to be the academic provenance of trainers, leadership development gurus, NY Times best selling authors, and others who were promptly ignored or dismissed by many supervisors or managers.
Or, they were problems that were thought to best be solved through time management training or just developing better habits and stacking them all the way to success.
Leading Others In A Time of A Pandemic…
All those productivity gurus and authors, it turns out, were right after all. You don’t really need to be working with other people directly when communication tools like Slack, Zoom, and others take all the “need to be in close proximity” factor out of interpersonal communications.
There are some industries and workplaces that will need to employ a hybrid model at this time, but over a longer and longer period, what will be exposed will be the following areas where leaders will have to lead in order to make their people better:
Stronger distraction control – when you work from home all day, distractions become a productivity drain.
Better writing skills – now emails, direct messages, blog posts, reports, drafts, and on and on that used to be able to be written in a slapdash or careless fashion, will now need to be written carefully and judiciously.
More astute media skills – remember when those “wizards of smart” said “everyone is now a media company” when social media became a real thing? Well, when you work, train, or learn from home, your media empire grows.
Better role modeling of scheduling care—now that people are working from home, the temptation for leaders will be to “flood the zone” because, after all, the last bastion of true untrustworthiness is “working” without being pinged by colleagues or any other kind of direct supervision.
Stronger boundaries on people’s attention – leaders naturally want to lead and the easiest way to do this is just to take the tendencies around meetings and move that to a virtual environment. Leaders should avoid this temptation at all costs.
Leading Others and Some Conclusions
The presence of the novel coronavirus, or COVID19, pandemic will change our lives in all kinds of ways in the foreseeable and in the “not so” foreseeable future.
Particularly in times of crisis and they don’t fail the leadership test whether people are working remotely or working side-by-side.