Thoughts on Leading an Exhausted Workforce - Docket

Thoughts on Leading an Exhausted Workforce

A recent Harvard Business Review (HBR) article by Robin Abrahams and Boris Groysberg, titled “Leading an Exhausted Workforce,” delves into the reality of leading a team in a mid- and post-pandemic world. Keep reading to learn more about what it means to lead an exhausted workforce and for some of HBR’s tips on doing so effectively.

Reduce Anxiety as Much as Possible

The pandemic has led to increased levels of stress for everyone. Every person’s life has changed in some way, and many of these changes bring about anxiety and exhaustion. HBR advised leaders to “minimize stressors in your own and employees’ lives” and “make a positive goal out of decreasing stress, across the board, for everyone.”

This doesn’t mean that deadlines should be ignored or that projects should be put on hold, but that the “little things” are handled more graciously. Even something as small as scheduling no-cameras virtual meetings or taking an extra 20 minutes each week to check in on team members’ wellbeing can positively impact stress levels.

Be Open and Lead By Example

Everyone deals with their unique set of problems, and it’s essential to show understanding and empathy. Be a role model for your team by showing them that there’s nothing wrong with taking your self-care and mental health seriously. 

In appropriate environments, HBR recommends that leaders should “occasionally begin a meeting by asking everyone to state one good thing they’ve done for themselves, or a meaningful conversation they’ve had lately” to ensure self-care is top of mind. 

Destigmatize Mistakes

Of course, trying to mitigate errors should still be a priority, but weaving an acceptance of mistakes into your company culture can help teams “do a better job of both learning from past mistakes, and experimenting with new ways of solving problems or conducting routine business,” HBR stated, referring to research from Amy Edmondson

The fear of making mistakes can freeze people in place, preventing creativity, productivity, and progress on projects.

Keep Exhaustion Under Control With Docket

Virtual meetings can contribute to this needling exhaustion many professionals seem to feel, leading to Zoom fatigue and non-verbal overload. There are tools that can help! Docket is a meeting productivity platform with features specifically designed to reduce the exhaustion associated with teleconferencing by making it easier to plan, host, and reflect on meetings after the fact. 

With so much else going on, video calls should be low on your list of things to worry about as a leader or a team member, so check out Docket’s capabilities today.

About the Author

Sarah Jones

With an educational background in psychology, linguistics, and French studies, Sarah enjoys researching and writing about marketing, current events, positive global change, and holistic health. When not creating content, her time is spent outdoors with a book in hand.

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