The war in Ukraine impacted the global economy so much that running business “as usual” is not an option for many international companies. Aside from affecting companies and their processes, the war can also impact teams and their performance. Some specialists experienced the danger of war directly, lots of others still have to deal with anxiety, stress, and low capacity. In order to keep their companies on track, managers need to implement effective team management strategies and pay maximum attention to their teammates’ wellbeing.
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6 Best Practices for Effective Team Management in Turbulent Times
Ukrainian IT companies report that most of their teams managed to keep 90% of their usual performance since russia invaded their country. The main factor that helped maintain such a high rate of team productivity in times of war is an experience of crisis management, obtained during the pandemic. There are several steps to an effective crisis management, that are essential during uncertain times.
Let Teammates Be Flexible
Despite the war, occasional or even non-stop shelling, and the need to relocate to a safer region, 84% of Ukrainian IT specialists have stayed inside the country. Since managers can’t expect their team members to be at their desks for 8 hours a day straight, they need to use an adaptive approach. Here are some concrete steps managers and team leaders can take to ease the working process:
- Empower team members to choose their working hours
- Contact teammates every day to check who is available
- Inform them how to log time-off
- Set longer response time for important messages
- Email results of the meetings to those teammates who could not be present
Following these steps will help managers organize business processes in an unstable situation properly. Team members can get a necessary support and relevant information, and make sure they have a job security.
Start a Day With a Meeting
Global pandemic gave us a lot of essential team management skills for crisis situations. Experience of remote team management can be applied again, and one of the most useful practices is to hold morning meetings. Team members can not only tell about their progress and plans for the day, but also get a safe space to share their feelings and get support.
Focus on Important Tasks Only
During an uncertain and ever-changing situation, managers need to set up priorities. It may include pushing deadlines and delaying plans that are not relevant at the moment. The main focus is to keep the project going and not to lose clients. Managers should be prepared to reallocate tasks if some team members can’t keep their regular schedule. It is also crucial to plan more time for each task than usual, to make up for possible emergencies. Teammates should be informed about plans and main focuses for a short period — a week and a month, so they would not get lost.
Check in on Your Teammates Frequently
Professional crisis management requires a lot of direct communication with team members. Managers should contact their colleagues via video calls or chats on a regular basis to keep them informed, track their progress, and help when necessary. They should also inform their teammates of what they should pay more attention to and how they can fix possible mistakes. It is essential to handle these conversations with empathy and understanding: no matter how important the project is, managers should empathize that their teammates’ safety and wellbeing are above all.
Transparency in Crisis Management
About 29% of Ukrainian companies are out of business because of the war, and 35% more had to limit their activities. Crisis situations require making hard decisions, and managers should be honest about them. Team members should know about any staff reduction, pay cuts, or changes in company policies. They should also know and understand reasons behind any changes. A well-informed team is a happy team. And happy teams are 12% more productive in the workplace.
Fulfillment of the Obligations
Crisis situations can cause chaos in regular business processes, but it is important that a company fulfills its duties. Not every business can provide specialists with regular payments, but it should be a first priority. Teammates may also need to get compensation in advance or another kind of financial help. Managers should talk to their teams about it and offer assistance, however possible.
Supporting Team’s Mental Health
The war in Ukraine did not only impact its citizens. People all over the world share anxiety, sadness, and tension. 80% of Americans named russian invasion of Ukraine a significant source of stress. What can managers do to support teammates’ mental health?
Here are some tips for managing stress in a crisis:
- Give team members an opportunity to talk about their feelings openly during one-on-one meetings
- Organize mental health trainings or inform teammates about self-care techniques
- Encourage people to reduce media consumption
- Inform team members about early signs of mental health issues
- Create a list of resources where people can get psychological help
- Pay more attention to those who are most at risk
Mental health often seems to be too personal for the workplace. But recent experience shows that it should get as much attention as a regular healthcare.
At SupportYourApp, we know that people are the driving force behind everything we do. Hundreds of our Ukrainian team members continue doing their job after the beginning of the russian invasion. Caring about their well-being is the top priority for us. We are connected, well-formed, and, most importantly, we always listen to and support each other. That what helps us stay as productive as ever, no matter the situation.
Anastasiia is a professional writer with a diverse background. She used to write about IT, logistics, business, but now her main interest is customer support and communication. Anastasiia’s biggest passion is reading — she prefers books over anything. She believes that the greatest thing a keen reader can do is to write themselves.Posted on