Calling all “fixers” and you know who you are! I’m hearing that leaders and staff are petrified about #RTW returning to work in a communal space. One said I’m terrified of working in a “Cargill tower” – WOW. Another honest and struggling leader shared that she had to go to the office briefly and couldn’t get down the hallway because someone was standing there and there was not 6 feet to pass safely. She wasn’t able to find her voice in that moment and left. She said “I don’t want to be fearful of people. I don’t like feeling hesitant being around other people. It’s unnerving. I’m second guessing myself. I don’t like my mental state and don’t know how to transition from being super cautious to being a little bit closer.”
Leaders before you leap to action it’s imperative to understand the inner experience AND concerns of your people. Many are taking steps to ask what their staff’s concerns are and that’s a good step but leaps over truly connecting to the essence of what’s going on for them… that means what they are feeling about coming back to the office/site. Use the @mentalhealthcommissions How Can I Help My Team? Guide. Step 1 is A-Acknowledge and Listen, Step 2 I – Inform and Remind – I would modify to Ask then Inform and Remind, Step 3 R – Respond and Follow-Up.
I assured this leader that what they were experiencing was valid and ok and they were not alone in this experience. I shared that I still find it unnerving to go in a grocery store, to mask, glove and psych myself up before I enter. It’s exhausting and I too wish for some kind of ‘normal’ to return even though I know logically this is an illusion. This isn’t a logical situation it’s an emotional one and that’s why logical/data solutions don’t work. Note to fixers – first assess the essence of the situation before choosing the right tool to solve it. The A-I-R process addresses both.
Supporting your staff’s #mentalhealth is no longer the sole responsibility of the medical profession or HR. It is a critical organizational competency.
If you step into this proactively you can reduce the impact on yourself, your team, your productivity and commitments. If you wait for the crisis to arrive before you act you’ll have a larger loss and fewer options to maneuver.
Be Proactive, Be Kind, Use your Heart.
#Leadership #MentalHealth #Coaching #Teamwork #Productivity #Leadwithcorevalues