Leadership Soapbox – COVID: The Impact on Leadership, part 1

How to lead during Covid


Hi, my name is Neil Poynter. And welcome back to the Leadership Soapbox. It’s sorry, we’ve been away for a while. I just had to sort a few things out, but we’re back. You’re going to see some changes here soon maybe some stuff happening.

Now, what I want to talk about today and this is a very quick introductory video to a longer one about what we’re having to deal with now, COVID.

There are real leadership implications about what is going on right now. We’re in either second or third wave depending on where you are. We’re seeing real impact on people now. And I don’t just mean physically. I mean, mentally, morale, motivation, mental health.

We need to be aware as leaders right now, that our people, however good we’re feeling, our people are starting to be impacted, especially I would say the more extrovert people who thrive on social interaction and being out and about, and being with people. And I don’t mean professionally as in perhaps our sales forces or perhaps those more field-based people. But I mean the extrovert personalities rather than the introverts.

There are a lot of things that we need to be paying attention to now. And leaders are going to need to step up over the next few months. I’m not saying we haven’t already. I think we have more work to do. I think there are many more things and there’s more time that we are going to have to manage this situation for.

Where we are now, this is not going away.

We need to be calm.

We need to be considered.

We need to have a plan for how we are going to deal with potentially I think the next six to nine months.

Yes, there’s hope about a vaccine. Yes, we can all hope.

There’s a lot of things that need to be achieved yet before we can move forward. Now, the thing that I want to wave as a flag here is that yes, people are looking at festive seasons and getting together with their families, hopefully for some sort of celebrations, whichever festival you’re celebrating. But what’s after that?

We’re going to hit the new year, January 2021. How are people going to be coming into that?

And then, if you’re watching this in the Northern hemisphere we’ve got two to three months of winter and still potentially in the situation we’re in.

We need to have a plan as to how we’re going to handle that. Now, what I talk about on the longer video, which I’ll link to at end of this, is some particular aspects of theory that we need to be thinking of. But we also need to be taking action and thinking about what we can do to help our people through this.

Whether you are in a business, a local authority, a political party or whatever, I don’t care. Right now, if you are in a position to influence people how they behave to lead, we have a responsibility to step up.

We also have a responsibility, to be honest with ourselves about how we’re doing. I’m going to be honest here. This has been a struggle. This last one, this last lockdown that we had in the UK, I’ve personally struggled. It’s been hard And we need to accept that. And that a lot of people will be feeling that.

Now, remember, this is an external factor that’s happening to us. This is not our fault. This is not anybody’s fault this is happening. And I’m not getting into the politics of that now, but it is there. It’s a reality.

People are struggling and that’s okay. This isn’t good. This isn’t normal. This isn’t great at all. So if people are feeling down, it’s kind of not their fault. It’s okay. And we need to make space for them to say that.

So that’s my main point of this. What we now need to be doing is going okay, how do we help?

How do we support our people moving forward into 2021? And we need to have a plan.

So think of this, I’ll put the link on the end of the video. Oh, it should be coming up sometime probably around about now. Have a look at the longer video. It’s about nine minutes, but I go into some particular aspects that we need to be thinking about.

And then I’m linking off that into my morale videos which I did earlier, which are now relevant, very very relevant about what we need to be doing. But we need to have a plan.

Okay, thank you very much for watching. Let’s start thinking about this. We need to have that plan for COVID and 2021. All right. Thanks very much for watching. I’ll see you again soon.