The entire world is currently in a crisis, and only an effective leader can make sense of the whole mess. With businesses shuttering and corporations collapsing, a visionary leadership cannot afford to leave anything to chances.
Many organizations are laying off workers, and most have asked their employees to work from home. While there is personal freedom with working from home, most workers must still be supervised remotely to deliver the best performance – and this is where core leadership development comes to play.
The coronavirus pandemic and its associated lockdown are supposed to inspire business resilience and leadership capabilities in career executives. In this time of economic, social, and career disruptions, a business leader must develop core skills to navigate crises and manage people effectively.
Leadership Skills for Managing Remote Employees during Lockdown
- Develop digital and interpersonal communication skills
Since remote employees must work using digital tools during this lockdown, a competent leader must be equally proficient at using productivity and communication tools. These digital tools are required for managing workflows, job delivery, invoicing, online payments, video conferencing, assign tasks, and instant messaging, among others.
- Understand your organization’s strategy and objectives
Leadership development requires that a potential leader understand his organization’s core strategies and goals. This will aid decision-making processes, resource deployment, and strategic implementations. It will also make for clear communication and staff engagement.
- Develop a narrative to build momentum and call others to action
During crises such as the current global lockdown, people look up to leaders to obtain directions. An individual with a promising narrative and the ability to call others to action will naturally emerge as the leader of choice. Such leaders will provide reassurance when people need it most, and also build momentum to achieve organizational goals and objectives.
- Manage Job Outcomes and Not Work Activities
With remote work relationships, a leader must monitor tangible deliverables as well as manage job outcomes instead of worrying about job processes and the activities that went into performing the job. Once clear directives or instructions with necessary deadlines are given, the leader must only await quality job delivery and not be hung up on the activities needed to get the job done – except, of course, the worker shares his concerns and needs clarifications.
“Set tangible deliverables and manage outcomes – rather than activities – where possible,” said Carol Gill, an Associate Professor of Organisational Behaviour at Melbourne Business School. “You can negotiate the deadline with your team members by asking how long they think it will take, and then get them to come back to you if it takes a longer or shorter amount of time.”
How to Connect More with Your Team during Periods of Great Uncertainties
- Help them to reach down within
In many situations, business leaders doubt that specific jobs can be done remotely and correctly from home. The truth is that employees involved sometimes also doubt their abilities to perform excellently from home. But a good leader must reassure his team and help them reach down within them to harness those natural resources required for maximum outputs.
- Equip your team with essential resources for optimum performance
Your remote workforce must have the necessary work-tools to work from home without compromising job quality or cheating on time expended. These might be personal computers, time tracking software, productivity software, Internet telephony, online training, and chatroom supports for optimum performance.
- Create a virtual office where everyone has access
Since remote workers must be continuously monitored to evaluate their performance and achieve set objectives, a good leader may create a virtual office where everyone can sign-in to work. A program such as Microsoft Team can be used as a virtual office where employees can sign in, share documents, assign tasks, communicate via chat or video, track projects, and do a host of other things.
Obtain Customized Leadership Training during This Crucial Time
While leadership skills come naturally to some people, it can always be learned and expanded upon through dedicated leadership programs. A viable business needs a competent and engaging leader to remain afloat during the current coronavirus pandemic.
A company can choose to hire skilled managers to manage project teams, but it might be cheaper to train existing personnel as potential leaders.
“Employees are a company’s most valuable asset, and if [firms] want to survive and succeed this crisis, they need to invest in developing their managers,” said Heidi Lynne Kurter, a US leadership coach. “Investing in the development of management can be done without spending money. Sometimes the best development is done by leveraging existing resources.”
A leadership development program can be accessed online or via personal coaching sessions. This training is usually conducted by expert trainers and industry personalities with vast hands-on experiences at managing people and business resources for organizational objectives and career advancements. The trainers have the skills, resources, expertise, real-life contacts, and strategic connections to build new leaders in any sphere of business.
There is always promising talent that can undergo leadership training for organic company advancement.
The leadership skills that they can learn may include organizational success, employee engagement, innovative ideations, productivity and performance, dedication and accountability, role clarity, psychological balance, conflict resolution, job collaboration, communication skills, employee relationships, and specialized competence among others.
“Coaches are trusted confidants that have the best interests of the individual and company at all times,” Heidi Lynne Kurter disclosed.
“By asking powerful and thought-provoking questions, coaches help managers identify innovative solutions, draw on strengths and improve weaknesses, establish new habits, be empowered to implement new strategies to improve their time management, communication, relationships and hone their soft leadership skills.”
While business entities invest in organizational models and technical resources, it might be more rewarding to invest in leadership development since effective leadership will be required to maintain and sustain all other aspects of the business. A workplace coach with a track record of training company executives and successful entrepreneurs would be best to hire for leadership training and development.