This fall has come to an end, which means it’s time for a new collection of the best leadership papers published during the last three months. Almost all materials today turn on the transformations and challenges caused by uncertain times. But we’ve selected the most general insights, so stay up to date and boost your leadership skills all year round no matter what. 

Changing Culture Is Central to Changing Business Models

Cultural norms define the way organizations operate including values, beliefs, and traditions. Today, in a time of uncertainty and transformation, the need for change has become one of the main challenges for many companies. The authors of the paper suggest three steps leaders should take towards the change:

  • Reconsider ideas properly before transforming them.
  • Make employees and customers know, accept, and feel comfortable with new rules and a new culture.
  • Check the impact of implementing changes and evaluate performance. 

Changing organizational culture is difficult and may involve tough decisions. For instance, in case some people counting leadership positions don’t do anything and are against innovative changes, the race to culture transformation may be started with their replacement. 

What They Didn’t Teach Me at Duke About Building a Team

Bryan Hamilton suggests that any team should be built on the following pillars:

  • Mutual respect and trustful atmosphere;
  • Discussions without the fear of expressing one’s point of view;
  • Dreaming big. Setting great goals together.
  • Good leaders aren’t afraid of doing work and serving. They’re equal to others.
  • Any team’s number one goal is to satisfy their customers’ needs. So the common goal is to make them happy.
  • Always remember that your employees have their families. And families always come first.

How to Develop a Leadership Mindset for Uncertain Times

This paper is based on the insights of Michelle l. Buck about leadership. The author regards leadership not as a position but as a type of mindset. She distinguishes the pillars on which leadership mindset rest: 

  • Leaders should understand the power of self-reflection and learn how to implement it in their life.
  • They have to learn how to derive benefit from misfortune.
  • Leaders should establish a favorable climate inside their teams and make everyone feel safe in that environment.
  • To expand their mindset, leaders should prefer the “and/both” approach instead of “either/or”.

Maintaining Workplace Diversity and Inclusion in Times of Crisis

According to Mark Anthony Dyson, the author of the paper, diversity brings the following benefits to companies and their leaders:

  • In such companies, employees feel valued and more motivated. 
  • A company with high-level diversity supports globalization trends.
  • It ensures increased innovation as diverse teams produce more out-of-the-box ideas.
  • Enhanced performance, which is proved by research.

The author suggests some tips to maintain diversity and inclusion at the workplace:

  • Make diverse hiring a goal. And it’ll be easier to achieve in times of crisis as almost everyone works from home and interviews are conducted in the form of online meetings.   
  • Work on your networks to engage more diverse people.
  • Establish inclusivity to make every employee feel part of the team.
  • Ensure diversity in leadership positions. It will make people feel more comfortable.

10 Ways Leaders Can Improve Engagement and Wellbeing

In his paper for Gallup, Dan Witters suggests the following ways to increase engagement and wellbeing of team members:

  • Speak to your people and ask them for ideas. Learn more about the way they see engagement and wellbeing at home and in the workplace. Try to take the best of them and implement them in life. In such a way, employees will know their opinions are valued.
  • Associate engagement and wellbeing with a company’s mission. Working for a common goal makes people engaged.
  • Select suitable activities for wellbeing promotion and let your employees choose the ones that fit them best.
  • Let every employee define what aspect of wellbeing is their natural strength and let them focus on it.
  • Don’t forget about appreciation for employees’ wellbeing activities.
  • Give them feedback and let them know you care about their wellbeing. Ask them about their progress regularly.
  • Ask team members to identify people who have a positive impact on their wellbeing. In such a way you’ll create a ‘wellbeing board of directors’. It will encourage everyone who’s part of the board.
  • Check a wellbeing parameter during every review progress meetings.

4 Ways You Can Address And Support Employee’s Mental Health

Heidi Lynne Kurter, in her paper for Forbes, considers the benefits of taking care of employees’ mental health by CEOs. the author distinguishes 4 ways leaders can address mental health issues:

  • Choose a mental health program to support your employees. Before you select, consider the options they provide and decide on what kind of support your employees need more.
  • Investing in mental health services promotes trust between employers and employees, decreases absenteeism, improves performance, and ensures a trustful atmosphere.  
  • Choose a way to communicate it to employees and make them know everything is confidential. 
  • Create a supportive environment to make your employees open up.

How to Actually Encourage Employee Accountability

The paper deals with the challenge of encouraging employee accountability against the background of teams’ fear of it. The biggest problem of accountability itself is that it’s associated with negative statements and judgments. The author suggests that to make this process mild and encourage people not to be afraid of it, it should be based on the following three rules:

  • Dignity is the core. Show your employees you care about their success and are ready to overcome difficulties. Then people won’t have any fear to speak the truth and share their pains.
  • Make fairness the goal. If you want others to be fair, do the same to your people. Everyone in the team should have equal chances to succeed in their career, and they should be aware of equality. You can ask them anonymously what they think, and if they don’t feel like everything is transparent, start focusing more on fairness in your organization. 
  • Avoid blaming and shaming at any price. To make people stop feeling ashamed for their mistakes, leaders should have really tolerant attitude towards them and perceive anyone’s errors as their own: have you provided an employee with everything they needed to accomplish a task? Have you given correct and full instructions about the task? 

Would you like to try some of these tips? Share your ideas in the comment field.