“Nothing is ‘business as usual,’ and it may not be for some time.” “COVID-19 has changed the future of business.” “The coronavirus pandemic is changing the way people work, learn, shop, and interact.” “Executives and employees don’t see eye to eye on employer responses to COVID-19.”
Open up your internet browser and you’ll quickly see a plethora of articles of the problems as well as potential solutions for businesses as a result of the pandemic’s impact. From technology to boost revenue growth, to surveys to gain insight of the aftermath of the pandemic, one thing that can be agreed on is that there is not a one size fits all solution for the challenges that have been thrusted upon every organization and industry.
With the continual disruption and waves of lockdowns, individuals and employers are collectively struggling to navigate the stress and anxiety that persistently crash against their energies like harsh waves that crash against a pier in a bad storm.
Leaders seek for better ways to deepen B2B relationships and build and bolster client relationships, an absolute must to cultivate a thriving business. But as leadership focus on new strategies to navigate the constant disruptions and implement new technology applications that best suit their new needs, they can unintentionally overlook the impact the pandemic has imposed, not just on the minds of their people, but on their own concentrations as well.
Stress and anxiety aren’t always immediately visible, but beneath the surface they silently take a toll. While satisfaction begins to dwindle and motivation is tasked, leaders and employees continue to press forward and continue to hustle. As the pressures continue to pile on, how long can such a person push ahead?
The answer is, “It depends.” Each person has an energy style or an approach to how they accomplish goals. One person may be highly inner directed, self-starting, and naturally have an intense approach to completing tasks. Another may instinctively have a follow through, supportive style in which he is dedicated to completing a pre-determined project. Yet another may unconsciously demonstrate her energy as a locomotive-like force that pursues and completes a project.
Regardless of the energy style a person has, even if she has developed the capacity to function within each type, the natural approach can only be sustained for as long as the person has the battery to maintain. Just as each person has a natural tendency in the way they accomplish tasks, each person also has an energy level that is unique to them.
When mental, emotional, and physical energies are consistently tasked over time, it imposes a drain on a person’s capacity. Significant amounts of stress can cause dissatisfaction, poor performance and turnover. One who normally has an awesome energy force can find herself unable to expend the mental power needed to sustain the normal complex endeavors of her leadership role. For the one who typically welcomes additional activities, now struggles with maintaining a handful of tasks.
As unnatural behaviors begin to emerge, it would seem reasonable to take a step back and evaluate the causes for the changes. Unfortunately, many don’t. Maybe they don’t because the changes are so subtle over time that they don’t notice the depth of impact. Or, maybe like my friend, they are focused on the urgent and convince themselves they just need to hustle and press forward.
Hustling and pressing forward is all fine and good, but not at the expense of one’s mental, emotional or physical health. So, what’s a leader to do? Hans Selye, M.D., professor and director at the University of Montreal, stated, “Excessive or unvaried stress, particularly frustration, becomes distress. And this, in turn, can lead to ulcers, hypertension, and mental or physical breakdowns.”
Stress cannot be avoided. Virtually every human activity involves stress. The key challenge is to understand and minimize long-term negative aspects of stress. That’s why we use analytics with 96% accuracy with our clients. The tools we use enable leaders to identify their own natural energy style and energy level, become self-aware of the dimensional adjustments they make to adapt to current pressures, uncover their level of satisfaction, and discover the available energy to perform their tasks. Then, and only then, are they able to design an effective plan to move forward.
This proactive approach of self-awareness not only helps leaders and managers commit to address the causes of stress and implement actions to recharge their battery, but it also empowers them to build stronger, more connected teams as they learn how to best help their individual employees.
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