A crisis calls many leaders to step up to the plate. You are the lucky one! It is time to lead! Leadership is not always easy but it is often needed. There will be times when many people will crumble under pressure or perceived failure. Crisis can be a time to shine as a leader. Discomfort and sudden changes are part of our lives! Crisis can be a beginning point for any new leader that creates greater possibilities.
Many organizations are facing challenges and crisis that need a strong leader who can step up to lead in tough times. Are you the kind of leader that freezes up? Blame the problem on others? Become a victim or a whiner? Or do you see the crisis as a chance to step up as a person in a leadership position and make a lasting impression on others?
At some point, you will face a crisis. Your ability to handle it successfully will depend on the following aspects of leadership:
They step up and do their duty, acting with honor and dignity.
Leadership begins with the duty to serve others, not you. It’s about going out there caring and serving the people you lead every day. When facing a crisis it’s important to keep serving and keep giving from your heart. Honorable behavior inspires greatness and loyalty in your people. Effective leaders in a crisis treat people with respect and honor even when things are not going well. Dignity is something that will stick in people minds about how you handle the crisis.
They let their humanity show by being open and visible
The best leaders are always visible and upfront in a crisis mode. They have to lead. They have to be there for their teams and navigate the ship from the storm. It means taking charge of a situation with your intuition and expertise to help everyone out of the challenging situation to the best of your ability. In a crisis people want direction and guidance. They want reassurance that things are going to be ok. They need to see a true leader who takes action to make the situation better.
They act decisively, keep a perspective, and put things in context
Effective crisis leaders know they can’t change the past. They focus on what is happening right now and talk about achievable solutions to a realistic time frame. They have the ability to share things in context to help people’s nerves and give people better perspective on handling the crisis. They take the time communicate how things will be better by being an optimistic leader.
Their private and public conversations are in harmony
During any crisis, people will look for trust and transparency. People are watching your conversations for integrity and trust. Do they feel you act as you say you will when you communicated in previous conversations? Conversations need to be real and authentic to create better momentum to deal with the crisis efficiently. People need to be honest and forthright in their dialogue to avoid further miscommunication through the crisis.
They have the courage to ask for help
Effective leaders ask for help. This is a time when personal egos and pride are placed aside. If you act as you always know everything, you are not credible. People don’t expect their leaders to have all the answers in times of crisis, but they do expect them to ask for help from other people as occasionally leaders may not know what to do at a given situation.
A crisis will show team members how vitally important the skills of other people are for the success of the team. The need for someone to help is sought out and this will introduce new talent and skills to the organization
“Faced with crisis, the man of character falls back on himself. He imposes his own stamp of action, takes responsibility for it, makes it his own.” Charles de Gaulle