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11 steps to manage a team through a business disruptionSeptember 17th, 2020 by
A business disruption is bound to happen from time to time. Unfortunately, managing a team through uncertainty is often tricky. Team members lose focus and can lose their motivation altogether.
The key to making it through a time of unrest is having a plan, banding together, and forging a new path forward. Read more about the 11 steps you can take to manage a team through a business disruption.
1. Communicate effectively and often
While you need to take time to understand the situation, it is paramount to communicate with your team. However, communication is not a one-way street, so listening to what your employees have to say is also crucial. You don’t have to have all the answers, but being open and honest about where the company stands, helps deter additional problems and speculation.
2. Be forthcoming
Speculation and rumors are detrimental to the internal culture of a company. When leaders fail to interact with their team, uncertainty can lead to a toxic environment. Employees may look for other opportunities, and it will not take long for internal rumors to reach clients.
If your clients feel that your team members are jumping ship, they may follow, turning a single client loss into total abandonment. Being forthcoming about issues is key to limiting the evolution of more elaborate problems.
3. Avoid micromanagement
Many managers want to take control of everything when a disruption occurs, but that is a mistake. If you start undermining your team by micromanaging their performance, you will lose employees. Trust your team. You hired each person for a reason. Let them do their jobs.
4. Drive core focus and purpose
When facing a business disruption, it is beneficial to remind everyone of the core focus and purpose of the business. Why do you do what you do? What is your company vision? Come together over a shared belief and value system.
By acknowledging the struggle and highlighting the reasons that you still push forward, you can motivate your team. You can encourage everyone to recommit to current customers and keep marching forward.
5. Develop a business continuity plan
If you don’t have a business continuity plan in place, get started on one as soon as possible. You want to lean on the expertise of your team leaders to create a potential solution for your current problem. However, remember that this is only a preliminary phase. To maintain a team mentality, you need to work through the details of the plan with everyone.
6. Build a future together
The traditional top-down approach to management is ineffective for developing strong teams. Leaders must be approachable and involved in daily team interactions, and employees must feel like they have a voice.
When you and your managers develop an initial recovery plan, present it to the entire team. Ask for input from those that will actually implement the strategy. Do they have any objections or concerns? Managing a team through a disruption is about more than resolving the current issue; it is about showing how the team will contribute to future success.
7. Remove roadblocks
Take the opportunity during this recovery phase to implement new strategies and operations. When designing a recovery plan, it is not uncommon to find errors in the way your business runs. For example, your team may see redundancies in procedures that are potential roadblocks to their success.
Asking customers for their perspective is also a great way to identify any inefficiencies. Get into a habit of surveying your customers to help improve and grow your business. You will then be able to address and remove any roadblocks.
8. Invest in professional development
If you lose clients due to a business disruption, don’t fall victim to a crisis mindset. Instead, invest in your team. Lean into professional development strategies. Encourage employees through training and incentives. Help nurture growth and build a stronger team.
By investing in your employees, you create a more reliable and happier workforce, which can motivate future jobs. By encouraging your team, you can also improve loyalty and reduce turnover during a business disruption.
9. Celebrate your team
It is not uncommon for employees to worry during a business disruption. This makes it necessary to celebrate your team and ensure that everyone understands their value to the company. After experiencing uncertainty, it is essential to maintain team commitment because turnover creates additional problems for everyone.
10. Take care of your customers
A business disruption can affect a team in many ways, both professionally and personally. While you are managing your team and making sure they have what they need to succeed during this time, don’t forget about your customers.
Make sure you are communicating with customers to keep them in the loop. Continue to assure them that you have a plan and your commitment remains.
11. Lead by example
You cannot expect your employees to continue moving forward if you dwell on the negativity of any situation. Lead by example and don’t ask your team to do things that you are unwilling to do yourself. Show them that you are in the fight with them. Offer support and assistance wherever and whenever needed.
Develop a customer feedback strategy with GuildQuality
While managing your team through a business disruption, you can’t forget about your customers. Partner with GuildQuality to perform customer surveys and help increase client understanding. The key to moving forward after a disruption is resolving current issues and developing a stronger business. Get started today!