In just a short period of time, the COVID-19 pandemic has turned our world upside down and challenged us like never before. Daily norms have been disrupted; organizations of all sizes have been forced into uncertain operating environments; how long this situation will continue is unknown. Change is never easy; and having to adapt rapidly to this shifting environment sometimes feels as though we’re sailing in rough waters, unable to steady our ship. Without question, businesses across the globe are questioning the stability and survival of their companies and workforce.
Much like a ship captain will deploy a sea anchor in turbulent waters to keep the boat steady until the storm passes, leaders must leverage their organization’s core values in challenging times to provide their employees and organization a steady steer.
Within our own organization, we’ve been rallying around our core values as we navigate this storm of uncertainty. By focusing on the essence of who we are, we remain engaged, aligned, and connected…despite working miles apart.
Here are some of the ways we’re living out our core values in today’s high-turbulence environment.
- We’ve been leveraging our networks to further support one another and our clients. For example, we discovered that one of our healthcare clients was in desperate need of face masks. In conversation with another client a couple of weeks earlier, we learned they have repurposed their business from developing CDs for artists to manufacturing face shields. We reached out to both clients, offering to make an introduction and they were both delighted to connect. The healthcare company is grateful to be gaining some much-needed supplies and the manufacturing company is thrilled they were able to help.
- We’re picking up the phone and setting up virtual coffee and lunch dates with our clients and co-workers to check in, share how we’re adjusting to the “new normal,” and offer support.
- Every week we’re hosting virtual happy hours, team stretches, and sharing “Joke of the Day” emails to keep our team connected, provide some much-need face-to-face time and social interaction, and catch up on things outside of work.
- As some areas of our business slow down and others pick up, we are collaborating across teams to support our clients’ and company’s needs.
- New and unusual circumstances call for new and innovative ideas. We are intently discussing and brainstorming how we can be of greater service to one another, our clients, and our community during this time. We’re reviewing and updating processes to increase efficiency; creating valuable content to help our clients navigate this complex new reality; and working with our clients to deliver services and support to their newly remote teams.
- We are making an extra effort to include all team members in the process of powering through this crisis and asking for ideas, thoughts and feedback. Everyone is involved on the path to solutions!
- We are sending out weekly surveys to the team to share some of the amazing things that are happening so we can all appreciate the hard work everyone is doing to support our business and one another during this time.
- Our dealings with clients and colleagues continue to be guided by an effort to do the right thing. We are meeting clients where they need us and shifting gears to accommodate new challenges.
- We are holding ourselves and one another accountable for our work and delivering on our promises to both our team members and our clients.
- Our leaders are openly communicating with all team members and remaining transparent about business operations, decisions, and the direction of the company.
- We are all honoring and showing up for our weekly virtual “all hands” meeting and one-on-ones to stay connected, informed, and share our successes and setbacks.
- We remain committed to our mission to help individuals and organization navigate the ever-changing world of work. We’ve created a resource center on our website with important information and updates for employers and HR professionals. We’re also supporting our career transition candidates via remote workshops and coaching sessions (and happy to report they’re landing jobs amid the turmoil!).
Now more than ever it is important to take actions aligned with your company’s values to best support your employees, clients and community. Demonstrating your company’s values when times are tough is a true test of whether those values are real or just words on a poster. While we don’t know exactly what the future may hold, we believe that by coalescing around your core values, your organization can emerge from this stronger than ever.
Director of Marketing