Did you know that in the U.S. 7.6 million people quit their jobs in the months of April and May of 2021? Reports of loneliness at work are as high as ever. Divorce rates are up 34% from last year. To say people have been a little stressed would be an understatement.
Let’s dig a little deeper into what the research is also telling us. Nine out of every 10 employees say they want to work for a more meaningful culture. People want to feel like they are a part of something bigger than themselves. They want to feel appreciated, valued and cared for. In the midst of so much angst, division and uncertainty in the world that seems out of our control, people need to be reminded about what is within our control.
Employees and companies need a reboot
Most employers are still figuring out how to support their people and engage with them remotely, in hybrid settings and in-person gatherings. With all that people have been navigating — differing modes of communication, the expansion of remote workers, global health, issues of racism, social injustice and equity, political and economic uncertainty — they are also expected to maximize the experience, product or service that you are delivering to the marketplace. It’s a heavy load.
Here are six mindsets to reboot staff:
- Clarity — Is your mission clear? Is your vision clear? Is your strategy for the next priorities clear? Take this time to reboot and make sure all are aligned with clarity. The outcome is that everything on the path forward becomes clearer. Your team may not have all the answers, but they’ll have energy and clear direction on how to take the next step.
- Inclusivity — Leaders in the world play an enormous role in widening the circle so that more diverse backgrounds, ideas, perspectives and experiences have a seat at the table. Businesses and organizations will lead the way forward in society by modeling how to have civil, respectful dialogue and educate people on the strengths of diversity, equity and inclusion. When our teams are inclusive and welcoming, it breathes life and energy into all. We’re stronger together.
- Agility — Possibility plus adaptability is the name of the game in a changing world. Leaders have to practice an occasional reboot that allows their minds to find new ways of doing things and the courage to adapt to opportunities that emerge. If leaders return to the “this is the way we’ve always done it” mindset, they will see their people leave.
- Grit — Resolve plus toughness is critical to help people navigate their way through obstacles, challenges, negativity, finger-pointing and division. Leaders help their people reboot to stay focused on the present moment and the actions that are needed to take the next step. Toughness isn’t about being physically stronger than others; it is about being able to be vulnerable with your people and still have the resolve to find solutions together.
- Rest — Organizations have an unhealthy association with the concept of rest. Americans last year left 768 million days of vacation on the table with their employers. That equates to nearly $66 billion of lost benefits. We’ve forgotten that the research shows deliberate rest is essential to elite performance. When we allow our bodies, minds and hearts to deliberately rest, we breathe more efficiently and are better at everything else.
- Ownership — Accountability plus action are mindsets and oxygen that the best leaders and cultures on the planet breathe. They connect the things they say they will do with positive accountability and action. Accountability isn’t a negative word; it’s a positive mantra that all take ownership of. In a world where people are quick to gossip, point fingers and criticize what isn’t working, the best leaders reboot themselves and their people and shift the focus from blame to solutions.
The best cultures proactively help their people navigate through obstacles, together. They intentionally choose to inhale positivity and the six mindsets above and exhale negativity, blame, gossip and division. The ecosystem of their culture is grown, developed, cultivated and led with intentionality, one breath at a time.
The process for developing high-performing and engaged employees never stops. The best leaders and organizations are committed to rebooting how they hire, onboard, do performance evaluations, develop emerging leaders and recognize excellence. The best leaders invest in their teams, together.
If you’re experiencing a lack of energy, passion or hope for the road ahead, it may be time for a reboot.
Jason V. Barger is an author and host of “The Thermostat” podcast. He’s also the founder of Step Back Leadership Consulting as well as a speaker, leadership coach and organizational consultant. Learn more at JasonVBarger.com or on social media @JasonVBarger.