Follow these 7 tips to be the leader your agents need right now.
When you’re running a business, it’s easy to get caught up in the day-to-day needs and forget that you’re leading a group of people who look to you for guidance. But as a leader, all eyes are on you. And this is especially true now.
COVID-19 and national shutdowns have changed our lives overnight, and many people are now wondering how this will affect their businesses. If your agents are panicking right now – and even if they aren’t – they need your strong leadership to help them adjust to the new normal. Not only can your direction help your agents strengthen their businesses, but it will provide reassurance that life will eventually return to normal.
1. Communicate, communicate, communicate
This crisis is teaching us all how important good communication is. Proactively reach out to your agents and key contacts in your area and keep in touch with them. Set up a system of regular briefings to that you communicate consistently. This will create a routine which will build confidence and reassure your agents that business continues.
2. Listen More Than You Speak
How you communicate is just as important as what you communicate. Be positive and encouraging in your communication with agents. Show that you care and above all, listen. Acknowledge that people are focused on caring for their families, managing kids who are no longer in school and trying to stay healthy, all while still trying to do their jobs. That’s not easy, so celebrate their successes!
3. Find Out What's Possible For Your Agents
The way we work has changed drastically. Video conferencing is a great way to still meet face-to-face and get a sense of normalcy, but you should find out what’s easiest for agents right now. Maybe they’re keeping the phone free for family emergencies, or maybe the internet bandwidth is throttled down because everyone needs it for school or work. Ask them what will work best for them now and support their needs.
4. Help Put Things Into Perspective
Remind your agents that their health – including their mental health – takes priority right now. Following official announcements is important but obsessing over the news or getting caught up in potential fake news on social media can lead to problems with anxiety or extra stress. Talk to your agents about how they’re doing emotionally and organize a group meditation session or encourage them to share their own stress-reduction tips.
5. Refocus their energies back to business as usual
Just as helping your agents will give you clarity and help you stay positive, helping their customers will be the best way to keep your agents grounded and stay active. Tell your agents to keep their customers informed and see what they can do to help. Saying, “I’m here for you” will be just as important to their clients as it will be to your agents.
6. Suggest tasks for catching up
Now is the best time for your agents to tackle those tasks that they have been putting off or that need more focus, like building websites or planning social media posts. But they should also remember to work their databases and leads and think about projects that will help them reach long-term plans so that they will be ready to roll once the situation starts to return to normal.
7. Remind them this too will pass
Remain as optimistic as possible, because your tone will have a significant impact on your agents. Stay positive and focus on strengths, successes, opportunities and collaboration. Remember that positive energy and confidence from you will turn into optimism and purpose from your agents. Together, we all will get through this crisis, and if we stay positive and productive, we will come back stronger than ever.