News & Insights

Leading and Connecting during COVID-19; How We Can Make a Difference

Mar 27, 2020

The world is now trending to working remotely - productivity and connectivity is key to your company’s culture and bottom line. RLG International and our trusted advisors address key questions to help us “respond” and “rebound” to Covid-19. As an organization built on remote work, we have successful tips on remaining productive and connected, how to enhance your culture, your skills and how to stay positive during a crisis.

How do we work remotely while remaining productive?

  1. Develop your office as a productivity zone.
  2. Maintain your normal routine; wake up at the same time you would have normally, maintain your morning workouts, dress for the office, etc. Keeping your morning rituals helps to maintain a positive start to the day.
  3. Begin your day/week with a clear written plan.
  4. Develop a weekly reporting system to assist in keeping you and your team on track.
  5. Apprise family members of your schedule to keep distractions to a minimum.

Send out a weekly report to all, here’s what I did last week, here’s what I’m going to do next week. With that I’m able to get them aligned with what I’m doing and can set up those touchpoints and interface points so that we are ready to get into the week together as a team.

John Shewfelt - VP, Capability and Development, RLG International Inc.

How do we work remotely while remaining connected?

  1. Weekly collaboration plan. Who do I want/need to connect with today/this week - Schedule it!
  2. Acknowledging your team. Brief check-ins.
  3. Technology. Communication tools (i.e. Skype for Business, Office 365, Intranet system, Yammer, etc.)
  4. Build in some fun. Schedule conference call happy hours or virtual coffee breaks.

We’re out there everyday with conversations whether its training and development, product development or client solutions and leveraging what one team and client is using in one place and sharing that idea across so that it really makes a big world feel much, much smaller.

John Shewfelt - VP, Capability and Development, RLG International Inc.

To hear the full podcast on tips and insights for remaining productive and connective while working remotely, listen here.

How do I coach my employees to stay focused and productive?

Our employees are filled with anxiety and questions about the future. This is a very uncertain time. We need to increase the amount of informal and formal communications as recommended in the other sections of this white paper.

Two specific coaching models will help as you try and coach to “reduce interference” and solicit “high performance”.

  1. The classic TGROW coaching modelTgrow
  2. Interference Coaching Model: “Inner Game” with David Webster of the UK’s Centre for Teams, and Charles Brook of TPC Leadership.

How can we build and enhance our corporate culture during this pandemic?

  1. Follow CDC and government recommendations. Let’s unite and all choose to follow well! Your team will respect you for it.
  2. Run to the problem. Don’t go quiet, don’t wait until you have perfect information.
  3. Communicate, Communicate and Communicate. You may have to change course the next day, but your people will appreciate your efforts.
  4. Start every meeting with gratitude. What is going right? Recognize the small things. Be specific and do it daily. 
  5. Honesty and transparency without fearmongering. Now is not the time to let your personal anxieties show in the spirit of honesty.
  6. Share hope and vision. What is your vision on how we will be better and stronger in six months? Share it again and again!
  7. Invest in personal development. How will your team be better and stronger coming out of this crisis? What on-line training should be made a priority?
  8. Remember to have fun! Set-up on-line contests, e.g. fitness challenges, training challenges, recognition contests, service challenges.
  9. Seek virtual community. It’s easy to feel isolated and become unproductive at home – especially if you are not used to it. Develop a community and work together towards ambitious objectives. Both the busy-work and the sense of purpose will uplift the soul while improving on core business and personal objectives.
  10. Have a business disruption plan. What is your Coronavirus response plan? Plan, Plan, Plan. When we plan together, we reduce fear. 
  11. Give something away for free! Show support for your employees. Give something away to your clients for free. Show them your commitment! You see most good businesses doing that with free “change fees”. Give free consulting or services. Do it! It will enhance your culture and your long-run performance!
  12. Maintain normalcy: When routines are being upended at work and home, keeping even small traditions and discipline can be comforting.

Some helpful tips to enhance your family culture during a crisis:

  1. Take the time to enjoy your family. Don’t spend it all in anxiety.
  2. Enjoy time outdoors but in keeping with proper social distancing recommendations.
  3. Reach out to others in kindness, you can make a difference all around you!
  4. Do something you've been meaning to do, now that you have the time to do it!
  5. Keep your surrounding clean.

Building a Winning Culture Pays! A Crisis is the Perfect Time to Build or Enhance your Corporate Culture!

-Adrian Gostick

To hear the full podcast on these tips and others from world’s best-selling author Adrian Gostick (Author of the Carrot Principle, All In, and Leading with Gratitude), listen here.

How can I use this time to stay positive and enhance my skill set during this crisis?

Improve yourself while time allows. Here are several steps we suggest:

  1. Take the time to do a self-analysis on your skills and capabilities, then map out a skill development plan for yourself. Share it with your team.
    1. What are you good at? Areas of strength to help others.
    2. Where have you fallen behind the technology curve?
    3. What core skills are you weak at?
    4. What core-training are you behind on?
    5. What can you learn about the position you aspire to?
    6. What wider thinking (in the world) can you study?
  2. Identify books to read and podcasts to listen to
    1. Industry books: your industry or industries of interest
    2. Books on productivity and motivation
    3. RLG CI4Life Podcast - featuring RLG's Rick Heyland. Excellent!
    4. Effective Modern Coaching - an essential read for all of us
  3. Reboot your personal life
    1. Set a fitness goal for the next four weeks
    2. Establish a habit
    3. Spent time on your important relationships - especially considering that many of us will be home more than we have been
    4. Start or strengthen your time of meditation or devotion to get stronger with your inner self or higher being
    5. Reach out to those in need in your circle or community

For additional information on “How to Respond to a Crisis” on CI4Life with Rick Heyland and guest, Mike Schlappi, 4 time Olympian and 2 time gold medal winner listen here.

Please be sure to check back with us for more insights on productivity and improvements as our team of specialists are getting organized to help you become Better, Stronger, Faster.

For more information on this topic or how RLG can assist your organization, contact Rick Heyland or Jerry Weisenfelder.