December 7, 2020 Jo

Top 3 Leadership Characteristics Needed During a Crisis

What leadership characteristics are the most important during a crisis? I get this question a lot. There are so many but I am going to give you my top three.

1. Resilience

If I start talking about this, I will go on forever. There is so much to say about it. Angela Duckworth has some very interesting points on resilience. You can read her book Grit or watch her TED Talk.

2. Immersion.

If you run your own business and you have a backlog then this is the time to look into it.
If you don’t have a company playbook yet, (the place where you log how you do things in your company), this would be a good time to start it. Now is the time to perfect systems and upgrades – immersing yourself in things that take time, which you have more of now than you normally have, generally speaking.

And the other thing about immersion is that it would give your mind something to do. In meditation,
it’s said that you need to give the “monkey mind” something to do – the monkey who thinks every single thought that comes around. You want to give that monkey something to do so that it doesn’t plague you with crazy thinking.
So the immersion gets you present, gets you invested and focused and fully in the flow of the task at hand.
Sometimes a big old backlog is a good place to go because it feels very satisfying. You won’t run out of work for quite some time, most likely, if you’re anything like me. And then you have a task at hand so that your mind does not play tricks on you, but you feel useful and it has something to do.

3. A can-do attitude

I remember there was a time when someone told me, “You have to think positively,” and I thought it was so dumb because I thought, ¨If things aren’t positive if I am not in the mood, I can’t just fake it.¨ But I learned after a while that it’s actually a skill, and who is in charge of this tool we have in our head?
The brain is a body part and who’s going to be in charge? Is it me or it? And I actually get to say, so if I’m in a foul mood or if I feel like nothing is going right, I still can pivot my brain. I can still pivot my thinking and I can go from can’t- be-done to can-do because I say so – and that is going to trump every other skill.

Leadership characteristics apply both to your company, but also in your life as a mother, as a father, as a sibling, as a daughter or son, as a parent. We need to try to lead wherever we go. Don’t wait.

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