Crisis Management; Nothing New For Women | Women in the Boardroom


Crisis Management; Nothing New For Women

Over the past few weeks, like you I’m sure, I’ve been rifling through the endless content on Covid-19, sourced to me through streams of newsletters, tweets, alerts, and other digital postings. I’ve also been speaking with Women In The Boardroom members about how they’re managing the current crisis personally and professionally.

Among the information I’ve been consuming and the conversations I’ve been having, a few themes stand true to me;

  • The system will change – once we get to the other side of this crisis, and we will, things within our personal and professional lives will inevitably be changing. In fact, it wouldn’t be smart if we didn’t evolve as individuals, a society, professionals, or as women in leadership as a result of this crisis.
  • We’ve been through crisis before  Whether you’ve adapted strategic plans in the wake of 9/11, weathered the storms of the housing financial crisis between 2008, overcome Hurricane Katrina, mapped out recovery and resolution plans for your company during a time of uncertainty, or experienced your own personal crisis, you’ve no doubt lead people through adversity and assisted them with the personal and professional implications of that adversity.
  • Women are better at crisis and are in higher demand now more than ever.

As women, we naturally exhibit the crucial skills and leadership behaviors, needed in times of crisis, more so than men. Behaviors and skills like collaboration, proactiveness, limiting the depth of crisis consequences, communicating, listening, trust and relationship building, self-control and more.

You may have also seen this very recent and very timely study suggesting that having women on boards is actually life-saving because of their abilities to be more responsive to a diverse set of stakeholders, including their at-risk customers.

The point is, we women hone the very essential skills and intrinsic predispositions essential for crisis and essential for what’s to come in the wake of the covid-19 pandemic. When this crisis is mitigated and the pandemic dust settles, boards should be conducting post mortems, assessing lessons learned, and uncovering new opportunities for their organizations and companies.

That’s why it’s important to consider how your management of this crisis will be pivotal in impacting the trajectory of your professional and board careers.

At Women In The Boardroom, our members are agile and lifelong learners. And now is an invitation to think more broadly about how you might be able to leverage your crisis experience to help guide you through this current crisis and position you as a more competitive board applicant. Don’t get caught in the lull of the pandemic, stay focused, and grasp tight to the opportunity to shift your day toward your board goals.

Reach out to me directly to continue the discussion.

Sheila Ronning, Women in the Boardroom Founder

Photo by Brian McGowan

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