Being An Effective Team Leader At Work During Fluctuating Times

Living in a post-pandemic world, it seems as though everything is changing. With changing economic conditions, many disruptions to global supply chains, and the restructuring of how many businesses and firms operate, there has been no shortage of challenges faced by team leaders in the workplace.

Could these turbulent times be a moment of opportunity for team leaders and executives to really step up and prove themselves to be good leaders? We definitely think so.

After all, moments of uncertainty like the ones we have seen these past few years are when companies can really start to differentiate themselves and stand out from the competition. Let’s consider the 2008 financial crisis as an example of turbulent times.

Many companies had to make significant changes in their day-to-day operations to escape the crisis unscathed. Cutting down on temporary costs was not a long-term solution, though. Instead, the thing that got most companies through the crisis was a focus on increasing productivity and growth. These are a couple of ways team leaders can manage their teams to overcome some of the problems being faced nowadays.

The Transition to Remote Work

Team leaders can help smooth out and manage the transition of their team members to remote work by exploring different avenues of holding online meetings. With millennials and Gen Z, most team members quickly adapt and can benefit from more advanced virtual office meetings through platforms like Roblox or Decentraland.

When more companies switched to working from home, team leaders took one of two paths. They either followed a surveillance path, meaning they tried to micromanage what their team members were doing by monitoring them non-stop on Zoom and other online platforms.

Other team leaders took the outcome-focused path. This meant that as long as the team’s outcomes were reached, the team leaders could allow their team to be more flexible with handling remote work.

The outcome path is definitely a way to help manage your team. It shows your team that you trust in their work and don’t need to micromanage everything they do.

Navigating Various Social Issues

Turbulent times mean that several social issues will be up for discussion, and many of these social issues can become politicized. To navigate social issues, the best thing a team leader can do is to try and actively listen to their team.

Often, team leaders will find that their team members aren’t after solutions so much as they want to be heard. While intentionally listening and responding to different team members can be time-consuming, it is worth the time to consider the trust that can be gained in return.

Many companies are running what has become known as a ‘listening circle.’ These listening circles are particularly successful ways to formally hear what your team members say. You can narrow down which issues need to be addressed and focused on and then find reasonable accommodations that can be made.