Communication consulting | Simply Confident Communication

Become A Confident Communicator


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Taking care of your virtual team in a crisis – from a leadership perspective

Working virtually is natural to those of us who have done it for years, we have developed practices, disciplines and tools that help us be productive, connected into the wider team for that human connection.

The future of work is becoming more and more online as I type this, and of course the latest crisis with COVID – 19 has now pushed this to a new level.

For those of you who are suddenly leading teams that are being forced to work remotely, here are some tips from our experience of leading virtual teams.

  • Offer daily touch points, live on something like ZOOM or teams etc, if you have had people working closely in an open plan office and now suddenly they are working from home, some could potentially feel isolated and this can lead to lack of motivation
  • Have an online chat tool going for people to interact like they would if they were in an office
  • Help people to be set up well to work from home, check on their environment, family situation, desk set up, internet speed, skill set level for digital platforms, never assume everyone is all good.
  • Make sure you spend extra time on your ‘pulse’ checks with your team, these are individual regular meetings that are happening normally, if not now would be a good time to start. 30 mins is fine for these one on ones usually, a check in at the start to see how they are feeling right now, before the call is over, then offer any support you can to help them through this time.
  • Brainstorm ways to stay focused for those who are working from home around kids working from home! Do work hours need to shift?
  • Check in staff are still having regular breaks for morning tea and lunch, perhaps consider having set times where people do this virtually on Zoom

Wherever possible try to create a supportive, connected culture online where people feel motivated, and supported to do their best work.

Put a positive spin on people learning new ways of working and connecting, so those who are resistant or fearful feel like they are gaining some great new skills that will pay off in the future.

This challenging time can either strengthen teams, so when they get back into an office environment they thrive or drive them further apart.

We get to choose, we get to choose the way we manage the things we can control right now.

Always happy to chew the ‘fat’ on this one if you want some more ideas and tips, please get in touch.

Jen Tyson,

PS: If team culture and communication was not great going into this, working as a remote team may feel like a welcome relief right now from the obvious tensions that come from people working together, but don’t be lulled into a false sense of security, because if the issues are not addressed they will actually create bigger gaps that will cost a fortune to fix and take precious energy and time to sort.

If you want to hit the ground running when this is all lifted, make sure you use this time to strengthen your team culture

www.simplyconfident.net

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Spreading love not germs – Tips for what we can control

Photo by Dimitar Belchev on Unsplash

Words are powerful – as a writer and communication coach, I have been mindful of this for many years.  Words are only one part of how we communicate but for every word spoken or written, there is impact.

I believe we each have a responsibility for our own communication – the ripples we are creating.

Words can feed love, compassion, confidence or hatred and fear

The thing is, most of us know and understand that at an intellectual level, however fear is an emotion and when we are stressed, overwhelmed or emotionally triggered our logic and reason and things we ‘know’ can fly out the window.

The headlines are full of emotional words on any given day, even more so now because the media has something hot and global, so they are running with it at an alarming rate and people are drinking it up like its truth.

People are mostly intelligent and for the most part very informed from proper channels through work and schools, like Ministry of Health, and World health organisation. These organisations have no hidden agendas, you can tell by the way they write, NO emotional headlines just updates and fact-based information.

FACT: Be aware of the media’s agenda

The media is not paid or funded to tell the truth, or even report the truth, they are paid to get readership, they are all climbing over each other to get more readers, more followers and more money.

They don’t care about the impact of their words, or peoples mental or emotional well being, they count clicks, likes and money that comes in from sponsored ads etc.

“What we reap we sow – what we feed grows”

We can’t control many things in this situation but there are some things we can control

Tip #1: Watch what you read

Be careful what you read and where you get your information from – always be discerning and aware of the information source, social media is responsible for much of the panic, stress, negative social and emotional impact right now. Take care of your own mental health, be discerning.

Tip #2: Mind your language

When communicating, mind your own language. What you share (spread), the language you use, the words you say and write. Even if you decide to ignore tip #1 and choose to read emotive media reporting, then please THINK before you share it. What is your purpose for sharing it? Will sharing it help others in a positive way or just spread more fear.

Tip #3: Connect with your team on a personal level

Communicating with your organisation if you are a leader, business owner etc, is vital and you will need to be keeping people informed. Please remember to connect in on a personal level with your people, ASK how they are feeling, how their family is coping, do they need any support emotionally or physically to get through this unsettling time.

Tip #4: Consider the impact before sharing jokes

Be careful about appearing insensitive, there are lot of jokes going around, always consider the impact before sharing them. If you feel you MUST share it, sometimes just in a personal message to a few friends or family will satisfy this drive we seem to have to share everything on social media, carefully consider what you share on your main feed, who may see it and what that impact may be.

Tip #5: Being community minded and helping each other out

Be community minded in your communication. Understand there are people being affected by this virus, the global panic and crisis in so many ways, in many ways much worse than we are in NZ right now. Instead of sharing negative stuff, keep up the posting of positive stuff, think of ways you can help life others rather than feed the fear and hatred.

Tip #6: What to do with triggered emotions

Processing our emotions is a communication skill that not everyone knows how to do in a healthy way. Emotions are part of who we are, and they can give us information to act in an intelligent way if we know how to process them.

Instead of being driven by emotions and reacting all over the show, which can be exhausting and wear us down, learn to process emotions, work through them to understand what information they might be giving and then use that as part of  planning what to do with that information.

Stay safe, stay positive and remember to be mindful

Love and good vibes to you all – keep spreading the love

Jen Tyson

Communication Coach – Author – Trainer

https://www.simplyconfident.net/

https://www.switchedonlearning.net/

PS:

Take good care of your physical health, keep up routines of exercise and health appointments, if you were going on a holiday that has had to be cancelled, replace that holiday with a ‘staycation’ still take the time to rest, relax and do something fun, it just may look different to how you had planned