It seems with each passing hour, things become more and more uncertain as we struggle to contain the COVID-19 pandemic.  Leaders across the globe are making impossible choices to keep us safe.  As someone who frequently works from home and leads a team of 90% remote employees, the concept of working from home is not foreign.  For others, this is a considerable shift in their day to day routine.  For others still, it means filing for unemployment.

There are simple things we can do to lead our teams through times such as these.  The simple things do go a long way with our people.

  1. Be Present:  Most people want to talk and, more importantly, be heard.  Listen to their concerns and respond empathetically.  Engage people one on one or in group settings to see how people are handling a situation.  You may learn of something, easily solvable that can reduce stress levels.  Ask for input; great ideas come from everyone and anyone.

  2. Communicate:  Whether you are involved in crafting the communication plan to a broader audience or responsible for delivering it, a plan is critical.  People want to know what to expect.  ‘People’ extends to your employees, clients, vendors, and partners.  Communication must be open and honest.  Like in our current times, things change hourly, it is ok not to have all the answers, but get them and deliver in your next communication.  Be authentic, follow through, and your messages will be well received.

  3. Trust Your People:  Trust those around you are making the right difficult choices for the good of everyone.  Trust your team to keep things moving forward if this is possible in your scenario.  Trust that your leadership along the way will carry you and the team through this.

We can’t plan for uncertain times, but we can lead people through them.  Simple things go a long way and we’ll all come out stronger on the other side of this.