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Leading In Crisis

Turn fear into adrenaline

Unless you are an essential business, you have been forced into some version of paralysis coupled with genuine fear. To understand human behavior around fear, it is important to recognize that it is not just the risks that create fear but also the unknown: When will this be over? How will I ensure my employees are safe? How can I maintain customer engagement and keep my business afloat?

Employees are in danger of slowing down as fear sets in and leads to inaction. In times of crisis, humans resort to creature comforts. Our homes become our caves of respite from the chaos of the world. While tempting, there is an inherent danger of a long-term work slowdown. As business leaders, this is a complicated dance of lending support in the face of fear, maintaining momentum, and inspiring employees to create and envision a future. Ultimately though, the C-suite sets the pace, and there is no way to win any race without keeping a steady one.

The key is to turn the heightened sense of fear into adrenaline. A hormone secreted especially in conditions of stress, adrenaline increases rates of blood circulation, breathing and carbohydrate metabolism and prepares muscles for exertion. Studies show that habits take 20 days to set in. Habits of inertia resulting from fear must be transformed by adrenaline into preparing our teams for the exertion needed to survive long-term business challenges.

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