Welcome to 2022. Glad to have you onboard! Yes, resilience is essential, and you managed to make it through twenty-two months of hell, hope and higher expectations. It wasn’t easy, life seldom is, however we’re poised to move forward and continue to lead lives that are whole again.
Leadership and resilience go hand in hand professionally and personally. Personally, you lead within your household, which could include a partner, children, pets, aging parents and more. This takes resilience.
At work, we may lead teams comprised of individuals and have responsibilities that are greater than our title might reflect. This takes resilience.
As we continue navigating the jungle and swamps that began in March of 2020, I want to remind you of a few things that you may have forgotten, blocked out or filed away for future thought.
1) 2022 is the year of the employee as it was in 2021. We are poised to help companies and organizations grow as long as they are willing to be flexible with hours, remote work and pay.
Getting this right will grow employee retention which is good for business. This will take resilience from employers as they like to call the shots.
2) Yes, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion which means that,
A- Millennials and Gen Xers (with a dash of Boomers too) had their voices heard. As an organization/company, you’ll need to be open to this and show that it is part of your culture or staff will leave! And, with today’s social media they will bury companies with negative comments. Conversely, a place of employment that supports DEI will improve morale, grow productivity and retention, and can ask staff to post some positive thoughts.
B- Resilient managers and leaders will listen well, take steps to assist individuals and teams plus answer concerns with efficiency so that it does not become a larger problem.
C- Good-bye manager…you STINK! This is not new, but it cost employees and employers a ton of time and money. A resilient company trains leadership to grow with the times. I’m sometimes shocked at the backward thinking that organizations still use. As I present keynotes and train folks, they share such antiquated beliefs as:
- Everyone arrives and leaves work at the same time
- No flexibility for those who desire to work from home
- Salaries are from 2015 (or before) with men making more than women who do the same job
- People of color have little representation in the organization
- Managers with bad attitudes who prefer to ignore feedback
3) This is on you, yes, you! There is a long list of lessons learned in 2020-2021. I’ll save you 100 lessons and boil it down to 3.
A) Give yourself credit for surviving. Seriously, you deserve it because this crap storm of a pandemic has affected all of us in our own ways. Back in March-October and beyond of 2020, the key was survival. You’ve been through a ton. Remember it and important lessons learned in your personal space you occupy on planet Earth.
B) I’m tempted to swear, but some of you may be offended. So, I’ll phrase it this way. DON’T BE A JERK! Please, remember that we all have gone through a lot. Some more than others and we’re not ready for life, business and relationships as usual. This will take time for staff, kids, parents, family and friends. Instead, BE COOL, patient and understand. I’m confident you’ll be happy you did.
C) Resilience means hanging in there when things get tough and you did! At work, as a leader, you lead with extra compassion, understanding and listened better too. It’s appreciated. How do I know? Because thousands of people told me so at conferences I presented/trained at prior to or after speaking. Folks have been more open, honest about feeling and even more caring than I can remember. This is good!
Our personal lives were tested beyond belief; the stuff movies are written about. Again, the stories people share are nothing short of heroic, heart-felt and even sad beyond comprehension. We’re a strong and resilient lot us humans. We get hit, knocked down and stand back up. 2022 is about you. Please make it so. Stay strong and resilient and have some fun too because you’ve earned the right and should dive back into life. Or just a step at a time. That’s good too!