Dealing With Uncertainty And Managing In The “New Normal”
We are facing significant challenges and changes as the old, pre-Coronavirus ways, are swept away and replaced by a different approach to management and working relationships.
The “New Normal” approach to managing will have the following features:
- The need for us all to learn about uncertainty: the key to successfully managing and dealing with uncertainty is to recognise that this requires us all to learn new habits and to unlearn old habits. Relearning tasks and routines may need to be dons more than once, which will mean juggling multiple new roles, reflecting and adapting to new business systems and priorities.
- Asking key questions: our responses to the following questions are critically important in the learning process around a new management approach:
- What have I learned about myself during the Pandemic?
- What has surprised me during this time?
- What has been difficult for me and what have I found easy to achieve during the Pandemic?
- Shared accountability: this will be the way forward as the focus will now fall upon team performance, rather than the importance of the individual in the management system. Individual accountability will be seriously diminished and will be replaced by collective accountability to achieve targets and to get things done through setting clear team objectives and priorities.
- Decisions will increasingly be made remotely: decisions will inevitably seem to be being made in less obvious ways, a natural result of more home working and changes in the way organisations accommodate and serve their employees. The days of big meetings in the office have gone forever. This creates a serious management challenge because tough choices made remotely will always stay in the collective, and individual, memory bank for a long time, so extreme caution is required when delivering your strategy.
- Remote teams and individuals need connectivity: there is nothing new about feeling valued and that what we are doing creates memory, but these feelings tend to get lost in times of uncertainty. There is a big danger in this process that management makes the same assumptions about morale as if the workforce were still in the building. Remoteness and working at distance will always decrease transparency which then opens up the risk of alienation and demotivation for individuals and teams, just at the critical point in time when things are very uncertain.
We stand at the beginning of a new management road map where uncertainty will be a constant theme for the foreseeable future – successful management understands this and will be able to prosper, while less savvy management will suffer and fail.
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