When the COVID-19 pandemic required employees at Tangram Insurance Services to work from home, I felt a deep sense of responsibility to the team. I needed them to know that I would be there with them through the challenges and the uncertainty.
And I began to speak directly to the team to stay connected, calm the increasing anxiety and demonstrate a valuable sense of momentum (even through the chaos).
The cornerstone of my communication plan is a weekly “Bright Spots” email, celebrating the wins and acknowledging the contributions made by key employees. I cap this off with a weekly video distributed to the entire Company – containing highlights of the week, a personal reflection, and an uplifting note to inspire the team in the days ahead. And in recent weeks, I have published these videos on LinkedIn so our brokers and clients can gain insight into our Company and how it’s being led. After all, people want to understand the humanity of a business, and what better way to give them a lens into our thriving culture.
It is really important to remain a presence in your teams’ lives, not just as a leader of the organization but also as a friend. I feel called upon to do this because I am privileged to sit in this seat. And I don’t have the luxury of curling up in the fetal position and asking everyone to fend for themselves. This is the precise time when leadership is called upon.
I rely upon our team to drive our business at Tangram. And I recognize that if I take care of them, the rest will take care of itself.
Remember, leadership can be displayed at every level of an organization from the CEO to the customer service representative. I encourage all of us to be authentic, to be giving and to be positive.
Here are 3 ways to harness the Power of Positive Communication:
Frequent Connection. Send regular weekly messages to the team in a predictable format that is easy for them to consume.
Keep It Simple. The actual content doesn’t need to be complex. Focus on details that are relevant and timely: celebrate something that the company achieved recently (big and small wins), and recognize the people who were involved.
Be Human. The crisis has impacted everyone and demonstrating it, adds to your relatability as a leader, as a person. Being positive doesn’t mean being unrealistic. Share the tough stuff.
Rekha Skantharaja l President & CEO Rekha@tangramins.com l 707.775.2662