April 1st, 2022

Connecting Leadership in critical times

These are critical times – and they have been for quite a few years now. The financial crisis, COVID-19 and then war in Ukraine have seriously disrupted economies, markets and supply chains, events that are all adding up to a tidal wave threatening to drown businesses everywhere in the world. What’s more, the climate crisis is looming at a rapidly closing horizon – in fact, many would argue that we are already knee-deep in that, too.

Constant crisis mode 

All this is causing business leaders to be in constant crisis mode, as they attempt to navigate the multitude of challenges that flood their strategic dashboards like one tsunami after the other. ‘Business as usual’ has become a notion from a calmer past – the time seems gone where leaders have the luxury to sit back and take considered decisions based on familiar data and obvious patterns, as largely irrepressible outside influences have tornadoed out of control. Add the rapid advent of artificial intelligence, blockchain and other new technologies, increasing worries about cyber security as well as the need for more diversity, inclusion and internal social cohesion – and it’s clear that today’s leader is going to need a bigger boat.

Stay afloat – share wisdom 

As crisis and issue management have morphed into continuous chaos management, it takes a strong leader to soak up the pressure and remain steady at the helm. Handing ammunition to the ‘management’ part of ‘chaos management’. Leaders need to stay afloat in this volatile era, building a bigger boat to ride today’s turbulent waves in a direction that will steer them clear of trouble while contributing to a happier and more resilient crew as well as a better world for all of us.

Preparedness and compassion

These leadership qualities revolve around drawing on your compassion while maintaining as many routines as possible. It starts with putting on your own oxygen mask on first, managing your emotions and accepting support while being real with your team, keeping people connected and preventing them from flaming out. It’s also about boiling it down to essentials, repeating your message, creating quick workarounds, planning ahead for every possible contingency, and capturing lessons learned.