As an insurtech start-up that happens to be the country’s first brokerage to offer end-to-end insurance purchasing online, we’ve certainly gone through the rapids as we entered the marketplace.
In the end, we’ve come out the better for it, thanks to some awesome leadership that keeps our company focused on the bigger picture while keeping employees in the loop and trusting in our own long range goals.
Issues and Crisis Management Call for Cool Heads
It’s a sure thing that every workplace will experience bumps along the road to success, and most of us expect—and even accept—those times as the cost of doing business. But what happens when your company, your division, or even your group experiences a calamity? How does a leader take responsibility and stay calm enough during the crisis to steer everyone clear of danger and back to smooth waters?
Communicate To Manage Expectations
I cannot over-stress the importance of communication while resolving issues and crisis management scenarios. As a leader and as a co-worker, it is of the utmost importance to have everyone on the same page. Let’s say your software launch didn’t go exactly as planned: knowing that all employees understand which issues and timelines take priority (and listing crystal-clear next steps) keeps everyone on point and working towards the same goals.
Consider and Manage Group Needs
When trouble hits the fan and flies out in every direction, people tend to huddle in camps—each with their own agendas. That’s why listening to employee concerns and providing frequent updates can reduce fearful speculation, which tends to exacerbate setbacks while minimizing gains during a crisis situation. Managing needs in a considerate, yet fair way keeps the boat steady.
Reduced or divided budgets, work time, or tech support can be the start of inter-office warfare in times of chaos. As a leader, it is necessary for you to deal with these very real scenarios, sidestepping the risk of becoming sidelined by personal politics or strong personalities. Staying focused on facts and the goals of the company can help you cut through rhetoric to steer staff back into a reintegrated group.
Act Wisely, Not Rashly
Finally, the key to keeping your cool during issues and crisis management to bring out the best from those around you is to take your time and act wisely. Though your instincts may be screaming at you to “Do something! Anything!,” the best course of action is to keep calm. Think before you act, or else you will contribute to the simmering emotions that bubble to the surface during tough periods.
A measured or cascading response is often the most effective in times of crisis.