Do you want to effectively lead through crisis?
So often we define leaders as those who have a title, a position, or those considered to be in charge. But we all have an opportunity to lead. Influencers/Leaders have the capacity to affect the character, development, or behavior of someone. That means every day of our lives we can impact those around us. We can find it easy to lead when things are perfect, but how does our leadership style change when we are faced with crisis? It can be hard to lead when the carpet seems to have been pulled right out from under your feet, or you feel like you have taken a blow that has left you breathless.
The ability to lead one’s self and others through crisis can be complicated. Merriam-Webster defines crisis as “an emotionally significant event or radical change of status in a person’s life.” Like me, I know you have walked through difficult circumstances that you now consider crucial turning points in your life. Whether it was not getting a job you felt qualified for, the death of a relative, or an unplanned traumatic experience, life happens to all of us. Our reaction can drive how others react. It is important to know that even unplanned experiences can define our character and impact others who are watching our lives.
I believe we are all being challenged to Lead Through Crisis and to help guide others through tight, restricted places. Your ability to lead under pressure or during a crisis will be tested. It’s imperative that you start with leading yourself before trying to lead others. Below are some leadership principles that have helped me when Leading Through Crisis.
Don’t give in to the temptation to abandon a leadership opportunity. Our communities are looking for those who will stand up to advocate for those who don’t have a voice. Stop looking around and, instead, look in the mirror. It’s you!
Use what you’ve got! It’s important that we value the gifts and talents given to us by God. There will only be one La-Kita, and there will only be one you. I still remember struggling with low self-esteem during my teens after often being told I talk too much. Those negative words were a ploy to stop me from being who I was created to be. But I decided I would not let those negative comments stop my calling and what I was purposed to do. What gifts do you no longer use because someone told you “you’re too much” or “you’re not enough”? Say no to those lies! Be bold and know that your contributions, ideas, and creativity are valuable.
An innovator introduces new ideas and methods even in the most trying times. Be careful not to entertain “I can’t do that” or “It’s never been done that way before.” Make a conscience decision not to manage the norm; instead, be the solution to problems that disturb you most.
Don’t allow your current situation to paralyze you. Choose to grow and lead others even through the most difficult seasons. Remember, you don’t have to be the one in charge to make an impact. People are watching and waiting for YOU to lead the way.
“Be a Leader Worth Following”
Pastor La-Kita has a website (lakitagilmore.com), Facebook and Instagram pages with additional resources.