In prosperous times there is a drive to set enthusiastic goals to be a better company and to be a better leader. But what happens when tough times come along?
Downturns are nearly impossible to avoid and ignoring them doesn’t make them go away. Thankfully, you can affect the impact it has on you and your company by understanding that while business is tough, you get to choose how to react. Embrace the following tips to put a positive spin on the next tough situation you face:
Check your attitude. As CEO you are one of the most influential people in your organization. You set the tone for the work environment and if you have a bad or bitter attitude that will filter down to your employees. Embrace a positive attitude and your employees will follow suit.
Keep your focus forward. It is easy to get caught up in the past and dwell on what could or should have been. As I’m sure you have heard a thousand times, the past is the past and can not be changed. Learn from the situation, adapt, and look forward to what is to come.
Sell quality goods and services. One of the hardest competitive advantages to sustain is price. If you have built an advantage on quality, stick with it. Your customers/clients are expecting a certain level of quality and are relying on you to provide it.
Give recognition. In tough situations morale is negatively affected. Your recognition could be the boost in confidence your employees need to stay focused and accomplish what needs to be done.
Surround yourself with the right people. There is an old adage that says if you want to know where you will be in 6 months, look at the people in which you are surrounding yourself. Your advisors, friends, and colleagues will either positively affect or negatively affect the direction in which you are headed.
Provide honest feedback. Tactful honesty is a sure way to cultivate a positive work environment, develop employees, and ensure tasks are being completed correctly. Providing clarity in what you expect of your employees and how they are performing is more important than you may think.
Prioritize. Focus today on the tasks that need to be done by the end of the day and prioritize your future tasks based on when they need to be done (tomorrow, next week, next month and next quarter).
Do the right things, right. There are four things that CEOs need to have a laser focus on: people, execution, strategy, and cash. Spend your time focusing on these things and avoid the temptation of addressing situations that aren’t related. Your time and energy is valuable and is best utilized by having a laser focus.
Don’t settle. Persevering through tough situations without compromise, while difficult, will strengthen your company more than anything else.
The biggest thing to remember in tough situations is that in the end, whether you believe you can or you believe you can’t, you’re right.