The current global recession is unique in terms of its depth, breadth and length. As the recession wears on, it’s wearing out business leaders. The fatigue that’s setting in among leaders is reducing their passion towards the organization and the business. It’s a silent problem of immense proportions.
Here are three questions for business leaders to ask themselves:
- Has the passion for your position or business waned in recent months?
- Are you feeling fatigued or disgruntled with the actions you’re expected to make?
- Are you overly apprehensive about the future and what it might bring?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, you may be suffering from “recessionism”—a low level of desire and passion to lead. Here are six ways to revive your passion for leadership:
Create movement: In economic downturns, business leaders often become consumed with day-to-day decisions. It might be time to resume your roles as a leader. This suggests delegating responsibilities and creating movement at every level of the organization. You can create movement for your company by positioning your staff to handle future challenges and opportunities. You can create movement for yourself by reconnecting with customers and solving problems. Without movement, an organization eventually becomes paralyzed.
Find focus: Organizations that have downsized are prone to a loss of focus because they have too many tasks to complete with too few resources. Leaders must find their personal focus and guide their employees in rediscovering their focus. At times, this means eliminating some of the activities on your plate. Don’t embrace or tolerate chaos, instead stay focused on what’s truly important.
Regain trust: Many leaders have lost the trust of their employees and other stakeholders. Some have even lost confidence in their own abilities to lead. To reestablish trust, start by making sound decisions and creating clarity around why those decisions are important to you and your stakeholders. Provide your employees a solid reason as to why you’re in the best position to actively lead the organization through economic turmoil and into the future. Trust is the cornerstone of every organization; you must also make it the cornerstone of your leadership.
Communicate openly: In many organizations rumors and hearsay have become the inside truth. Leaders must regain the communication channel by speaking and communicating to employees with honesty and authority. This means increasing the frequency, urgency, and importance of their message.
Embrace anxiety: Leaders are looked upon to bring their company and people through anxious times. Rather than becoming crippled by anxiety, use this as a tool. Accept and embrace anxious moments. Use them as a challenge or opportunity to grow as a leader and to position your business for increased revenues.
Use your resources: Resources can be found from several sources, which could include your board of directors, business banker, or your Chair’s experience and knowledge as well as the members of your group.
As this recession lingers, the potential for leaders to lose the passion for their position of leadership is real. The path out of the woods isn’t simple, but it’s achievable through being aware and taking action.Vistage Chair Rod Johnson, based out of Minneapolis-St Paul, has recently published the award-winning book, “Without Warning: Breakthrough strategies for solving the silent problems taking aim at your organization.”