Leaders Breakdown Under Pressure

To become an effective leader, there are several core competencies one should have—ranging from the ability to influence and inspire others to knowing how to act decisively. While these traits are important in our daily role as a leader, they are especially critical during times of pressure and stress. The demanding situations and crises we face over the course of our career are likely to be the moments that define who we are as a leader and, potentially, as a person. How we act in these situations can impact how our employees and co-workers remember us for rest of their lives. When managers break down, so can their teams, resulting in hindered performance and lower morale. This can cause your employees to miss deadlines, make mistakes, and potentially lose customers—the exact opposite of what you need during times of crisis.

Over the past 20 odd months, crisis mode has become the new normal. Even the most fortunate among us is likely struggling in some way. Knowing this, good managers everywhere are feeling pressure to “fix” situations for their teams. Guess what? You can’t fix this crisis. And that’s ok. Even if you don’t have control over the conditions or fallout from the ongoing public health, social justice and economic crises, you do have control over building and supporting your team‘s resilience. It’s time for a new approach to the situation we’re in now that we’ve officially crossed into the long-term-near-permanence territory. Businesses must acknowledge new priorities and goals, and leaders must remain open to fresh ideas and candid discussions with employees and agree to disagree.

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