February was a big month. It was Black History Month, Lunar New Year, World Cancer Day, Valentine’s Day, Family Day, Pink Shirt Day, and Nonprofit Sector Appreciation Week (in Ontario), among others. There’s been a whole lot of news to consume (some positive, and some devastating), there’s also been progress towards a return to “normal”, yet still a lot of unknown.
I saw a post referencing an article from the Harvard Business Review with a quote from Bill Taylor stating “The challenge of performing while transforming has become the leadership test of our time”. I could not agree more. Leadership encompasses SO much these days. It means taking care of your people, your customers, your business, your community all while navigating important change, and let’s just call it what it is, crisis.
There is so much to consider every time you speak, write, or share with others. How will this be perceived? How will this make others feel? How does this align with corporate values and behaviors? How does this serve the promises we’ve made both as individuals and as an organization?
In reflecting on this “test of our time”, we’ve gathered a few tips and resources to help make your role as a leader a little bit easier. Have a look!
Words of wisdom:
- If you don’t do this already, start time blocking in your calendar. Look at the areas you need to cover on a regular basis to meet those performing and transforming objectives and ensure you have time dedicated to uniterrupted progress in both areas.
- Tap into your network. If you don’t already have a mentor, get one. If you do, expand your conversations on a regular basis and connect with others in your network. This is one of the best ways to get different perspectives and boost your energy when the feeling of overwhelm starts to creep in, no matter what stage of your career.
- Make time to connect intentionally with your team. We all know that engaged employees are happier, more creative, collaborative, and innovative team members who produce better results. Be strategic about your interactions with your team, and measure engagement to get a true understanding of what fills their buckets.
Tools you’ll thank us for later:
- A calendar of important dates throughout the year. Recognizing and planning for these important days goes a long way with people. Download ours here and put it up in your office or schedule a reminder for yourself to look ahead every month and plan accordingly.
- Camille Dundas’ EDI Microcredential in partnership with Dalhousie. “Foundations of EDI In The Workplace is a self-guided program with a unique approach that tackles uncomfortable topics with proper context laying down the groundwork or a heightened understanding. Camille Dundas’ real talk, fresh approach allows for difficult concepts to become relatable and meaningful”. Find out more here.
- Nancy Rothbard’s Nano Tool for Managing Remote Workers. Whether you plan to return to the office, continue to collaborate digitally, or find a balance between the two, knowing your team’s work styles and understanding their differences is imperative. It’s this awareness and adaptability that will contribute to individual development and retention.
Finally, give yourself some grace. Whether you’re a brand new leader or you’ve been doing this for years, the world is different and you’re not expected to know it all. Stay informed, commit to continuous growth, and celebrate the little wins – they are what get you to the big ones!