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Give Your Remote Workforce a Sense of Togetherness

This article, authored by our executive coach, Kevin Jordan, continues a special series titled “Creating Resiliency During the COVID-19 Crisis.” 

This series will feature articles, podcasts and additional resources from our Consultants Collective member consultants, advisors and coaches, whose experience and expertise includes risk and change management, Asia, China, offshoring, leading distributed global teams, managing crises and internal communications, deploying and managing online collaboration tools that enable people to work together virtually, developing new models, as well as expertise in innovation and design-thinking, work-life integration — and more — all of which uniquely positions Consultants Collective to serve its clients during this time. We hope this series is a valuable resource to you and your organization as you tackle the challenges presented by this global public health crisis. If we can provide additional help and support through our executive consulting, advisory and coaching services, please contact us.

I hope you are all remaining healthy and safe as we get to know our families in ways that we never thought possible! 🙂  

This week I continue with the theme of leadership, with a series of new and different articles and podcasts that look at, among other things, the importance of trust, candor, leadership vs management, effective communication, thoughtful, yet timely decision-making, team culture and dynamics and other pertinent topics.

Some of these pieces leverage the coronavirus as context; many others do not (and in fact were written or discussed prior, with the podcast Humanity’s Temporal Range eerily capturing much of what is going on now). The lessons and takeaways are still germaine and applicable. The Freakonomics podcast re: social distancing covers a lot of current and relevant ground and is quite informative, as is the essay entitled “The Coronation” (he unpacks a significant amount in an incredibly thought-provoking way). There are some pieces for all of you working parents trying to work and navigate home learning, as well as some practical Zoom tips. Finally, we end with some reflections as varied as they are compelling. 

As always, happy reading and listening! And please stay safe and look out for your families and your community. 


“What The Coronavirus Teaches Us About Leadership: A Lot. This crisis…reinforces a new model. It reminds us that above all, business is all about people. Without a feeling of truth, trust, and power, people can’t perform. With these things, people will bring us out of this crisis. Above all, this Virus is giving us a gift. An important lesson in leadership. We are all connected.”

 “4 Ways You Can Give Your Remote Workforce a Sense of Togetherness. Here’s how four of those companies have made remote employees feel part of a close-knit team — no matter how far apart they may be.” 

“Are You Leading Through the Crisis … or Managing the Response? The most effective leaders in crises ensure that someone else is managing the present well while focusing their attention on leading beyond the crisis toward a more promising future.” 

“When to Stop Deliberating and Just Make a Decision. When should you just make the decision versus gathering more data or cogitating on it longer?…You need to do a little “meta-decision analysis,” or put more simply, you need to decide how to decide.” 

“Communicating Through the Coronavirus Crisis. When dealing with uncertainty, leaders need to look at communication from the perspective of your audience and have empathy for them rather than fear of doing the wrong thing. This requires companies to communicate when they don’t have all of the information, to reveal as much as they can about sensitive information, and to be vigilant about correcting mistakes without worrying about the repercussions.” 

“Productive Conversations Take Real Empathy. How we show up in hard times and easier ones, how we listen and connect, how we give and receive support, how we care for others — those are not just commitments. They’re skills. The courage and willingness to really see other people, and be seen by them, doesn’t get in the way of our leadership, it is our leadership. Empathy is worth prioritizing.” 

“5 Strategies for Leading a High-Impact Team: Why ‘teams are not cocktail parties,’ and other words of wisdom. Many of the strategies leaders have adopted to improve teamwork, while well-intentioned, are not all that effective. Thompson…clears up five popular misconceptions…and offers a roadmap for building and maintaining teams that are creative, efficient, and high-impact.”

 “Do You Really Trust Your Team? (And Do They Trust You?). When you give trust, you not only empower others, you also develop the individuals on your team into stronger contributors, and in doing so, you empower yourself as a leader.” 

“To make change happen at your organization, here’s the first step to take. It’s a myth that startups are the world’s drivers of innovation — in fact, company employees are the primary sources of new ideas. But before you can propose them, you need to identify beliefs that are getting in your way.” 

“In Negotiations, Givers Are Smarter Than TakersGenerosity is a sign of intelligence, and givers are the rising tide that lifts all boats.”

 “Feel like you’re about to lose it? It could be a good time for a Meta-Moment. When we’re overwhelmed by emotions, we’re usually not our best selves. We may blow up, say hurtful things or burst into tears. But what if we had a tool we could use to turn down the temperature at those times?”

 “A Guide for Working (From Home) Parents. We need to lean on our village now, more than ever. The nature of this crisis requires that we find safe and responsible ways to help each other out while upholding our responsibilities at work and at home..With any luck, we’ll emerge from this crisis even stronger and more collaborative: a modern take on an age-old approach to parenting.” 

“‘A Week of Snow Days’? Ha! Families Deal With Cabin Fever. As people become hostages in their own homes, hired clowns and costume nights may not be enough to maintain sanity.”

 6 Tricks You Need to Know About Zoom.TED Talks/Podcasts”Freakonomics Radio: The Side Effects of Social Distancing. In just a few weeks, the novel coronavirus has undone a century’s worth of our economic and social habits. What consequences will this have on our future — and is there a silver lining in this very black pandemic cloud?” 

“The Anthropocene Reviewed: Humanity’s Temporal Range. John Green reviews humanity’s temporal range.” 

“The Bregman Leadership Podcast: Neil Pasricha. How can you increase your resilience?…author Neil Pasricha has a great deal to share on the topic, and the book [You Are Awesome] is one of my favorites this year…We discuss the importance of accessibility…the importance of having an “untouchable” day, and a practical exercise you can do each morning to strengthen your mind.” 

Stronger for longer: How top performers thrive through downturns. Resilient companies enjoy gains that last long after an economic crisis has passed.”

Blog Posts (excerpt below with links to the full post)

“The Life-Changing Magic of Having ‘Enough.’ What would happen if we stopped constantly lifting our eyes to the next target?” 

Preserving Optionality: Preparing for the Unknown. We’re often advised to excel at one thing. But as the future gets harder to predict, preserving optionality allows us to pivot when the road ahead crumbles.” 

“These Are The Three Most Important Words of Wisdom: Let It Be. That we can just leave things as they are. We can let them be. We don’t have to get upset. We don’t have to have an opinion.”

 “GenC. There’s a juxtaposition of the physical connection that was lost as we shelter in place, and the digital connection that so many are finding online….The lattices of the connection economy are racing to replace the edifice complex of the previous one.”  

Arts, Music & Culture Corner”

The Coronation. To be alone is a primal fear, and modern society has rendered us more and more alone. But the time of Reunion is here. Every act of compassion, kindness, courage, or generosity heals us from the story of separation, because it assures both actor and witness that we are in this together.” 

“Lockdown living: how Europeans are avoiding going stir crazy. People across Europe are finding increasingly inventive ways to protect themselves against the psychological risks of isolation.” 

Sinead O’Connor is still in one piece. She tore up a picture of the pope. Then her life came apart. These days, she just wants to make music.” 

“Dave Matthews to Play Live-Stream Concert Thursday to Kick Off Charitable Web Series. Matthews’ at-home gig will be the premiere of a Verizon-sponsored show, ‘Pay It Forward Live,’ that will benefit small businesses closed down due to the coronavirus pandemic.”

Kevin Jordan

Kevin Jordan is an International Coach Federation-certified executive coach who serves as a strategic advisor, mentor and facilitator to executive leadership teams and private clients to achieve peak performance and agility resulting in sustained engagement and value. Drawing upon a career as a leader and consultant, Kevin is able to work with clients on personal and professional development, relationship optimization and team and leader dynamics. He has deep expertise and experience developing and realizing strategic vision through a relentless focus on optimized business operations. He is also skilled at building sustainable culture and workforce engagement through the power of people and organizational partnership, as well as delivering results and value with high performing teams during periods of intense change.

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