Depending on your industry, the economic recovery from COVID-19 may be on the horizon or in the distant, unknown future. Regardless of your outlook, you can now take action to prepare your team for a successful recovery.
To better understand what executives are doing to adapt, we surveyed 500 of them about their challenges and the steps they’re taking to overcome them. One of the key findings was that most executives are delegating more than they did before the pandemic to leverage others’ insights and help them cope with their increased workload.
In this article, we’ll dive into the top four areas that executives seek help with and how you can use them to drive your recovery process.
1) Leverage Broad Insights for Strategic Projects
Since the pandemic began, 50% of executives have reported seeking more help on strategic projects. Even seasoned leaders are being confronted with challenges that they don’t know how to solve
While it’s not practical to offload strategic projects completely, you can delegate critical potions to leverage a broader range of perspectives and skills.
Here are some examples:
- You’ve decided to keep a portion of your workforce permanently remote but are concerned about IT security risks. Create a task force of the most tech-savvy employees from throughout your company. Have them create a list of as many vulnerabilities as they can find. This gives you a strong starting point for revamping your company’s IT security infrastructure.
- Sales are down 50%. Delegate the initial round of strategy development to a committee of your sales, marketing and product leaders. Once they’ve come to you with ideas, you can begin charting a path forward.
- You’re concerned that employee engagement and morale are diminishing. Have some of your most connected employees propose strategies to reinvigorate their teams. You can tie their plans together as part of a larger initiative to improve company culture during these difficult times.
Delegating portions of strategic projects to top-performing people throughout your organization gives you a wide variety of ideas to help you make better decisions than you would be able to make independently.
2) Offload Admin So You Can Focus on Strategic Priorities
Making strategic pivots and keeping your team focused amidst all of the stresses that COVID-19 can be incredibly demanding. As a result, 49% of executives have sought to free up their time by seeking more help with administrative tasks.
- Data entry and cleaning
- Coordinating meetings
- Formatting documents
And a variety of other tedious tasks. You can do the same by delegating any work that doesn’t require your authority or expertise to a junior employee or virtual assistant. Doing so will easily save you a couple of hours a day that you can spend on activities that contribute to a successful recovery.
3) Create a Positive Feedback Loop to Help Your Team Stay Organized
Keeping track of all the moving pieces in your work and personal life during these changing times is a challenge. As a result, 49% of executives are seeking additional help with staying organized.
Our research indicates that they’re doing it a variety of ways including:
- Delegating document management to their assistants so that important files are easy to find.
- Making their teams responsible for keeping a task management tool updated, so it’s easy to see where projects are at.
- Leveraging their assistant to optimize their schedule, so they have enough time to tackle all of their priorities.
And seeking help with a variety of other activities to help their team run smoothly.
Staying organized during volatile times is a team effort. Delegating most of the tactical tasks lets you focus on maintaining a clear strategic direction for your team. Giving them a reliable path to follow makes it easier for them to stay organized, creating a positive feedback loop that will sustain your team’s productivity through these dynamic times.
4) Give and Seek Moral Support
2020 has been a tough year even for the most optimistic, and we’ll adapted leaders. This is why 37% of executives we surveyed seek more moral support than before the pandemic.
This helps executives have the mental stamina to perform well through this prolonged period of stress and plays an influential role in maintaining team morale.
Research shows that leaders’ emotions are highly contagious. If they consistently exhibit negativity during their meetings, employees are likely to feel stressed and, eventually, demoralized. However, leaders maintain an optimistic, can-do attitude; then, most employees will feel confident that they can overcome all the challenges they’re facing.
However, in a period where almost everyone is going through a tough time, it’s important to seek emotional support compassionately. Before seeking comfort from someone, consider what they’re experiencing. Leverage a variety of people in your life and bond with other business leaders who are navigating the same hurdles that you are.
By offering support in similar amounts as you’re receiving it, you can help your support network resilient so that you can continue to leverage it far beyond the duration of this crisis.
Want more insights into how executives have adapted in the COVID-era? Download our free report.
About the author: Emily leads Prialto's content production and distribution team with a special passion for helping people realize success. Her work and collaborations have appeared in Entrepreneur, Inc. and the Observer among others.