If you’ve managed to spend even a tiny bit of time scrolling through your news feed, there’s a good chance a batch of stories caught your eye about how people are adapting to working from home. What struck me was how clear thinking and inventive folks tend to be even under the most difficult of circumstances, which is what the COVID-19 pandemic is proving to be.
There was an article about a woman from Minneapolis, a mother of three, who devised a verbal trigger system to change “modes.” She would say to herself, “shifting from employee mode to mom mode” when she stepped from the home office to the kitchen, where her kids were. And the tale of a guy in a New York City apartment was truly enjoyable. He turned the bathroom mirror into a whiteboard to sketch out a problem. It was solved but his wife’s lipstick was ruined.
But what made the biggest impression on me was a report from Tel Aviv about an entrepreneur who felt that by being required to work in isolation, everyone was, in effect, their own CEO. It was a really thought-provoking notion.
A CEO typically is responsible for a business’ objectives and strategy, and must see to it that things move properly forward to achieve its aims. The man in Tel Aviv suggested that since we’re all on our own, working from homes across the globe, we’re leading organizations of one. On a daily basis, we set priorities, determine the process to get stuff done and evaluate the outcomes. Nice concept, but it falls a part in practice.
Even the CEO of a company is responsible to others. They’re called the Board of Directors. And that’s really my point. In organizations, employees are members of teams. They combine their expertise and skills to handle tasks, drive to goals, and draw on each other for energy, inspiration, motivation, and, on occasion, sympathy. That’s how it works.
So, how’s it working now that you’re in your home’s “executive suite?” To adequately respond, you really should answer these questions. And, like the mother from Minneapolis, say the responses to yourself.
- Do you wonder if what you’re working on is aligned with your team’s or company’s priorities?
- Do you wonder if your manager thinks your performance is where it should be?
- Do you want to be able to sharpen your skills or, given all the tumult, learn new ones?
- Can you easily communicate with your manager and other team members in an effective, even, enjoyable way?
- Do you miss being recognized by your teammates for a job well done?
If you answered no to any of this, maybe you should hang out with that entrepreneur in Tel Aviv. Or, more sensibly, you should consider having your organization put in place – quickly – a mechanism that can maintain the sense of team you enjoyed – and your company benefited from – before COVID-19.
True to the expression “when the going gets tough, the tough get going,” Centrical, a company with an employee engagement and performance management platform, was moved to action by the impact COVID-19 was having on its customers and, without a lot of analysis, the likelihood lots of other large companies would face the same challenges.
It created and brought to market in rapid fashion a solution that can be operational in less than a week. It keeps employees feeling connected, motivated, learning from their managers, and performing at their best in this seemingly worst of times. It’s called Centrical Connect. Two major contact center services providers are already using it, much to their employees’ appreciation. If you don’t have it, you need it now, more than ever. Learn more here.