When the COVID-19 pandemic was officially announced, many staff team members were forced to rush home and set up a work environment there.
After the first period of uncertainty, things started to settle down, and this too became a ‘norm’. Employers began to reassure themselves that business could ‘go back to normal, although online’, and to some extent, employees began to believe this too.
Some even felt that the fact they were not forced to commute to and from work daily also helped their mental health, since a larger percentage of stress was taken out of their equation.
As CEOs, are we prepared on how to handle this new reality? In this article and upcoming series of articles dealing with leadership in the times of COVID-19, I will be sharing some experiences.
As days turned into weeks, and weeks turned into months, staff started experiencing new ways of carrying out their duties.
Employees are beginning to assess the new boundaries set by employers and managers, who in turn are beginning to assess those same boundaries, but from their point of view: when is it too much? When is it too little?
Management and leadership as we know it today (or rather pre-COVID) had been carved out of the business world which was re-created post World War II. No one had challenged these efficient management and leadership protocols… or at least not until COVID-19 happened!
What leadership methods do we need to adopt now? Who has experience in this field? No one!
Top leaders know that one of the tools needed for leading is making use of the ‘Energy in the Room’, and the energy between the leader and the follower/s. However, remotely, this energy cannot be banked upon, so, for many leaders and managers, it was just as if someone blew up the ‘bridge of communication’, just like the Bridge on River Kwai!
In the upcoming articles, I will be looking into methods of restoring communication.
Opinions here vary… and by a lot! Some managers who adapted positively to these new changes have a better idea of how to conduct business in ‘the new way’, and hence can still lead their teams and manage timings accordingly.
Other managers might panic. and try to maximise on their eight-hour day by compressing many meetings back-to-back, sometimes without leaving time for the basics like cigarette breaks or bathroom breaks.
How are the staff at home to react to these new challenges? Who will coach them on these new requests? I will be looking into these issues in the next articles in order to shed some light.
We earlier spoke about ‘the new norm’. What is the new norm? Are we really familiar with the new ways of doing business? How are our staff members doing? What is the new role of our HR department and our HR heads?
Stay tuned for the upcoming articles by Corporate Coaching Malta, where we will discuss which signs to watch out for in this ‘work from home’ scenario.
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