6 Management Suggestions To Help IT Leaders In Tough Times

by drjim on May 21, 2009

Tough Times Call For Solid IT Leadership Skills

Tough Times Call For Solid IT Leadership Skills

Can it get any worse than it already is? Does anyone see a light at the end of the tunnel yet? Times are tough all over, and being an IT Leader right now is just about the toughest job out there. It would be all too easy to tuck your head down, turn off the lights, and not talk to anyone until this is all over. However, you are an IT Leader and you can’t do that.

In these tough times you need to overcome your base instincts and do what good managers should do – lead. As a reminder of just what that really means in these tough times, here are six things that you should be doing right now:

  1. Treat your employees as responsible adults. Yes, sometimes in these dark days they don’t seem to act that way, but they are. This means that you can’t boss them around or soothe their fears with made up half truths.
  2. Reach out. This means that tough times call for you to reach out beyond your normal contact groups and have more fingers that go deeper into the company. This is the only way that you are going to be able to discover what is REALLY going on. This is the information that you’re going to need to be able to communicate to your team.
  3. Practice emotional intelligence. It’s true that your team will perform better even under all of this fear and doubt if they believe that you really do understand and respect them. This means providing opportunities for everyone’s opinions to be heard.
  4. Be Fair: Tough times won’t last  forever and you’re going to need your team to stick around when they no longer have to. This means that when you have to do distasteful tasks like layoffs, you need to be open and honest about why certain decisions were made. Everyone may not agree with you, but at least they’ll understand why you did what you did.
  5. Open The Door Wider. Allow your employees to being more of themselves to work. Time are tough and you are going to be asking more from your remaining staff, you need to make it easier for them to balance all parts of their life.
  6. Enjoy Your Job: It is critical that you find some part of your job that brings you joy and happiness. Even in these tough times, you need to let others know that this one thing makes you very happy. Your enthusiasm will be noticed and it’s catching – you’ll bring everyone’s mood up.

How many of these six management actions are you currently doing? Are they being successful? Do you disagree with anything that’s on my list? Did I leave anything off? Leave me a comment and let me know what you are thinking.

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