Last week our six year old son broke his elbow. He broke it so bad that he required, an overnight stay at the hospital and surgery on Father’s Day Sunday. While my husband and I drove to the hospital I started messaging friends and family to let them know what was going on. Immediately, people reached out to us to offer help. Now that the crisis is over, I look back on the experience and can relate it to how we handle a crisis in the workplace.
When a crisis happens in our personal life or the workplace, we often see people around us respond in a variety of ways, there are always players on the team who play different positions. Here is what we experienced, and maybe you can see these types of people in your professional experiences?
‘Drop everything to help’ player-These people are willing to change their schedule or their plans to help you, they are willing to give up parts of their lives to help, and they are willing to act where ever needed. Within minutes of people finding out about our son, these people asked about our older daughter, they asked if they could help take care of her while we were at the hospital. It was Father’s day on the Sunday, but many people were willing to open their pre planned days celebrating the Father’s in their lives, to include our daughter. In the professional world, I experience these people as the ones who dramatically alter their schedules to cover you, and they take on tasks and responsibilities that aren’t in their job description till the crisis has dissipated. They are most likely the ones that handle the BIG ticket items or responsibilities and they are the ones who you trust implicitly.
Think of the BIG ‘little things’ player-These people take a few moments to think about your life and what you might need outside of the BIG ticket stuff. They usually know the details of your life well and they know about the little things that could prevent you from staying focused on what is necessary in the crisis moment. This past weekend we had some friends who volunteered to check in on our dog and hang out with her while we were at the hospital. Two of our friends made contact with each other and they took care of the details without even discussing them with us. Of course, they were people we trusted in our home and with our dog, so they knew they could take care of the rest. In the professional world, this is usually someone who not only knows what needs to get done, but they know how YOU would do it. They take the time to care about the things you do, just because they value and respect you. These people usually have a standard of excellence that’s similar to yours and they often care about the same things you do. These people are usually the ones you trust to do a job well.
The Cheerleader-These people are a source of emotional support and encouragement. They pray for you, send good thoughts, send snippets of wisdom/advice, and they check in throughout the crisis mode and then they follow up after the crisis has simmered down. This past weekend we had many people reach out to us who sent prayers and well wishes. We took the time to read them to our son; he was encouraged and excited to hear from them. In the professional world, the Cheerleader is someone who might not be in a position to act but they can cheer from afar. Other businesses in your community, colleagues who work around you but not directly with you, other community members, and even people who you used to work with. These people are valuable because of their ability to communicate and support.
When you have a crisis in your world do you have a balanced line up? Do you have people you can trust your valuables to? Do you have people you trust the details to? Do you have people who encourage you?
All three types of people are important when a crisis hits your business or your place of employment. Do you have a well balanced line up of players for when your crisis hits? If your answer is no, how will you develop your team into the players you need so that your line up is balanced? My suggestion, lead by example in their lives when they experience a crisis. Every great coach was once a great player! -Dawn