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Leader as a Calming Force

change leadership leadership Sep 04, 2020

Written by Roxanne Brown

As a leader, sometimes you need to be a calming force for your people when change is happening. Sometimes you need to inspire and motivate but sometimes being a calming force is what people need.

This applies to the Change Professional too. Leaders and Change Professionals illuminate what’s happening as a change progresses helping others make sense of it. This has a calming effect on the culture, clearing space to focus on the work.

You bring calm when you acknowledge things that aren’t known yet, when you acknowledge decisions that seem inconsistent with the company’s values, when you acknowledge things may feel a little chaotic.

Just communicating that this is pretty typical when a company goes through significant change conveys your confidence in the process and in the company’s ability to successfully adapt.

How do you know when it’s time to bring calm to your organization? A few signs:

  • When people say that they don’t know what they should focus on and are having trouble making traction on their work.
  • When people keep asking “why” questions because they don’t seem to understand the answers you’ve given them so far.
  • When the misunderstandings between people are increasing and more and more is being escalated to the top.
  • When people are raising risks that are not that big a deal or aren’t really risks at all given the bigger picture.

If people are self-protecting, which is not an unusual reaction to change, it’s time to bring calm to the hostile workplace environment.