I’ve been thinking about you as we all travel through this rapidly changing, stressful environment. I trust this finds you healthy, happy, and hopeful!
If you’ve attended our leadership development programs, you already know how passionate I am about effective communication. I owe my ability to overcome adversity in the past to it. Well, now we are all dealing with similar adversity: how to develop and maintain relationships throughout a worldwide pandemic. During this crisis, communication is still the key to moving forward.
Travel bans, shut-downs, remote workforces, wearing a mask—all of these “new normals” have taken managing and leading our teams and developing effective communication into uncharted territory.
How do we talk about successful body language or physiology now that we are social distancing, wearing masks, and conducting most interactions and meetings virtually?
Do we need to re-think the components of effective communication?
Are they still relevant in the “new normal,” or will they be relevant in the “next normal?”
I would say a resounding, “YES!” As French writer Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr wrote in 1849, “plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose “—the more things change, the more they stay the same.
History as a metaphor to develop leaders is a powerful approach. These lessons are as meaningful today as they were in 1863. The important aspects of communication, whether signal flags, drum rhythms, or zoom meetings, transcend these modalities.
Here at LLI, our adaptation was possibly similar to yours—we had to continue to work with our team, provide our products, and connect with our clients, all virtually. Though it wasn’t always easy, we are beginning to see the “silver lining.”
By partnering with an Emmy award-winning television production team, we made our signature experiential learning even more relevant, powerful, and accessible. We learned the importance of resilience, agility, and adaptivity.
If nothing else, we saw the need for leaders to own these capabilities faster than we ever imagined. Continuing to develop leaders at all levels is crucial to not just weather this current storm but to achieve long-term success.
I hope to see your best “Zoom-face” and get to know your “virtual persona” via a live broadcast from Gettysburg. We will have breaking newscasts from the battlefields, breakout sessions with our award-winning faculty, and exciting case studies illustrating the leadership concepts necessary for today’s leaders.
From our first open enrollments, we were excited to learn that all participants found the experience to be as powerful as, if not more so than, face-to-face: “Best-run Zoom meeting I have attended,” said one attendee. “Production was top notch.”
Stay healthy. Stay safe.
Hoping our “virtual paths” will cross,
Steve Wiley, Founder and President