Leading well in the ‘virtual’ world…

by | Apr 12, 2022

The whiplash-change that occurred two years ago forced us to take business (and our #leadership) into the virtual world more than we’d ever experienced.

For many, Zoom or Teams remain the environment and context for work. And walks around the neighborhood continue to replace the business travel once part of our regular routines.

Leading #teams in a virtual environment isn’t easy.

But neither is #leading a team in person.

One of the reasons many leaders saw a greater level of breakdown when Covid hit—was partly because there were already gaps and cracks in the foundation that just weren’t visible until the environment changed.

But the reality is the principles of great leadership remain the same. What has changed is HOW those principles are applied.

Interestingly, a lot of leaders we’re coaching have been surprised that they are leading MORE EFFECTIVELY today.

I’ve had some tell me that in spite of Covid, “Not only am I a better leader, because I’m more in tune with what’s going on with my employees, but I’m a better leader because I’m with my family more.”

If you’ve felt like Covid negatively affected your leadership and your team, here are some tips for how to get back on track:

#1 Are you working on yourself as a #leader? Where can you level up? Are we trustworthy, leading by example, being 100% #accountable, listening effectively, #coaching your team, asking for #feedback, communicating well?

#2 Do you know what your people want or need? Shorter meetings more frequently? Longer meetings, less frequently? Whatever it may be, #adapt to what people actually need. Be sure to ASK THEM (better not to assume).

#3 Make time for 1:1s with each team member. This is the best way to support people…by giving them time, attention and space, staying #connected and offering #support.

#4 Brainstorm collectively how to get your team’s needs met. In group settings #ideas can spark, synergy happens. You can facilitate discussions where your team not only feels heard but also contributes to finding #solutions.

#5 Stay #open. This is so important. The solutions may come in a way that’s different than anything you’ve done before. Openness will help you be responsive.

#6 Stay in #conversation. More than likely, the problems your team is dealing with aren’t going to be solved in one day. Make sure people know they can keep coming back for support, to share concerns as well as ideas for making things better.

Being distant, being virtual, isn’t going away for many.

We must recognize that “the way it’s always been done” has to be replaced by “new ways of being even more effective.”

If you’re struggling to lead well, it’s going to show up regardless of the setting and the environment.

If you are leading well, the virtual aspect will just be another opportunity to #learn, #grow and adapt.