How to Lead Your Team Through a Crisis

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Do you see a crisis brewing on the horizon at your job? Whether it’s a lawsuit, layoffs, a merger, an impossible project, or anything else that could throw your office into a tailspin, it’s up to you to lead your team through this challenge. While no two situations are the same, there are a few standard practices that apply to almost any crisis. Follow these guidelines to keep your team sane until the chaos has settled down:

Stay organized.

When you keep things organized for your entire team, you’re doing your part to reign in the chaos. Even if a crisis situation is happening around you, maintaining organization and stability will make things feel like they’re on track — even if they’re not. Maintain status check-ins on projects, keep your notes updated, stay on top of deadlines… and make sure your team does the same.

Maintain open and honest communication.

There’s nothing worse than a leadership team who doesn’t communicate with their staff during a crisis. This will only breed unease, resentment, and rumors. In short, you’ll be contributing to a toxic environment, rather than maintaining a positive and honest culture as your team navigates the crisis. You might not be able to share every little detail with your team, but be as open and transparent as possible as the crisis unfolds.

Set boundaries.

As a caveat to the previous point, it’s also essential that you set boundaries. Realize that you might have to filter some information before it reaches your team, depending on the situation that you’re involved in. If you’re not sure what’s able to be shared with your staff, ask the next person up the ladder. It’s tricky, but essential, to walk that fine line between transparency and restraint.

Reassure your team frequently.

Simply telling your team members that everything will work out can go a long toward making your employees feel more comfortable. You don’t want to give people a false sense of security, but reassuring them on a daily basis is more helpful than you might think.

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Posted in Managers on Jul 19, 2021