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How To Build a Great Team Culture With DiSC

Acknowledging the elephant in the room

Ever notice how easily hatred spreads? It ignores geographic borders and steamrolls right over social boundaries. It leaves destruction in its wake by building walls of pain and trauma separating people and dividing communities.

According to a recent report in Business Insider, “A survey by Glassdoor of 1,100 US employees found that 61 percent of US employees had witnessed or experienced workplace discrimination based on age, race, gender, or LGBTQ identity.” 

If you don’t’ want your staff to be among those victims you need to know how to build a great team culture. One that eliminates and avoids that kind of bigotry and embraces inclusion. And you can start by acknowledging the elephant in your own boardroom.

The landscape in Corporate America has changed. It’s more diverse socio-economically, culturally, racially, generationally, and experientially. But for all these differences we have one thing in common: everyone is still human

That truth is hard for some people to wrap their heads around so their behavior is often inhumane. Blinded by walls of difference, they wind up saying or doing “the wrong thing” according to someone else’s definition of “right.”

Welcome to the world of microaggressions

  • Complimenting a colleague for being articulate? How flattering! Unless the person you’re flattering is African American. In this case, you may be damning him with faint praise. You probably did not mean to imply that his eloquence is exceptional for a black person. But he may infer it nonetheless.
  • “What country are you from originally?” Innocent enough question unless of course, the person to whom you’re speaking is of Asian descent. In this case, it might be offensive because they may be a native-born American like yourself.
  • “Wow! You don’t look [Jewish, gay, pregnant]!” Okay, seriously, how could this NOT be perceived as [bigoted/clueless/offensive]? 

Comments like these are examples of an explosive new 5-syllable, buzzword known as microaggressions. A quick Google search will reveal microaggressions to be: brief and common daily verbal, behavioral, and environmental communications, whether intentional or unintentional, that transmit hostile, derogatory, or negative messages to a target person because they belong to a stigmatized group.” 

Business Insider posits that “They come out in seemingly innocuous comments by people who might be well-intentioned.”

A landscape littered with eggshells?!

Wow! PC or political correctness is becoming a pain in the coccyx! With everything else that’s going on in the world, who has time to tiptoe on eggshells to appease every oversensitive person you encounter at work? You’re already up to your eyeballs in alligators, right?

The problem is that it’s not always about people being over-sensitive.  In some cases, these seemingly fragile souls are just worn out from years and years of seemingly innocent-but-insensitive remarks from others. So,  experts say that the effect of these little offenses is cumulative.

Imagine a series of papercuts. The first 2 or 3 may sting; 100 papercuts might become infected; 1,000 could cause an emotional hemorrhage. Now imagine yourself inflicting that last papercut! No harm may have been intended, but lethal harm was inflicted nonetheless. 

How to build a great team culture: put in the work

How can you vaccinate your company and prevent the spread of this disease? Start by creating a protocol in which it’s safe for everyone to talk. Where both the offender and the offended can vent. Where the easily bruised can speak as well as the bullish brute. And the foundation of that protocol should be DiSC personality profile training. Why? Because DiSC is an emotional oasis that shifts the focus from conflict management and arbitration to understanding, inclusion, and acceptance.

DiSC stands for Dominant, Influential, Steadfast or Supportive, and Conscientious. These 4 personality types encompass all of us—no matter our gender, ethnicity, or sexual orientation. 

DiSC doesn’t “out” anybody as wrong or bad or expendable. This isn’t a game of “The Weakest Link.” On the contrary, DiSC personality training can help you identify the strengths of each member of your staff and help them deal with their weaknesses compassionately. 

How to build a great team culture: build bridges

DiSC won’t make you a bonafide psychologist or a licensed therapist, but it is therapeutic. That’s because the training literally helps to clear the air so that all parties can take a deep breath, let down their guards, and have a true meeting of the minds. That is to say, DiSC reveals how you and your colleagues’ minds work based on your different personality types. 

DiSC: a prism for all of your “isms”

The insights you glean from your own DiSC evaluation can help you do the self-work identifying the origin of some of your mindsets. Ageism, racism, sexism, body image bias, sexual orientation, classism, disability bias. These “isms” can make people sick emotionally and even physically. 

Workplace stress, headaches, ulcers, and depression—many of these maladies can be linked directly to workplace conflict triggered by  our personal “isms.” They can be contagious and make everyone at work sick. DiSC can put your company on the road to recovery and help you build the great team culture you’ve dreamed of.

 

 

 


Creating a Virtual Team Building Event

Creating a virtual team building event can solidify your company’s reputation as a socially responsible corporate neighbor and boost the morale of your staff as well. And in this current climate, both are sorely needed.

Pandemic Pandemonium

In addition to all of the suffering and deaths, the country is also reeling from record-breaking unemployment. Small business implosions. Pending Paycheck Protection applications. Unpaid bills and foreclosures and looming rental evictions. First-time visits to food banks. Reimagined graduation celebrations for students without hope of immediate employment. 

And bedlam in the marketplace is also wreaking havoc in homes across the country. Before the pandemic, parents rarely spent 24 hours a day, 7 days a week with their kids or their spouses. Social isolation, especially in close quarters, has frayed a lot of nerves. Many breadwinners lost their jobs and were forced to stay at home with nothing to do. And compounding this psychological shock many parents were compelled to master the role of homeschool teachers for their rambunctious kids. 

There has been far too much drama and trauma for a lot of people to handle. The result: an alarming increase in reported cases of domestic violence. Equally shocking is a report from the American Red Cross of an increase in house fires during the quarantine. 

According to a report from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health  Services Administration [SAMHSA], “Children are specifically vulnerable to abuse during COVID-19. Research shows that increased stress levels among parents is often a major predictor of physical abuse and neglect of children. Stressed parents may be more likely to respond to their children’s anxious behaviors or demands in aggressive or abusive ways. The support systems that many at-risk parents rely on, such as extended family, child care and schools, religious groups and other community organizations, are no longer available in many areas due to the stay-at-home orders.”

Creating a virtual team building event for healing

Fear can prey on the strongest among us. Imagine what it can do to a defenseless child. And imagine what it must do to the hearts of first responders? Police officers, firefighters, paramedics, and other healthcare providers—they are barraged every day under normal circumstances. They must be reeling under the psychological weight of this new surge of child abuse and the terrified faces of the victims. 

Now imagine you and your company bringing healing to both! By partnering with Magnovo to conduct a Rescue Buddies Charitable Team Building Workshop, you can offer an emotional lifeline to first responders and the children they help to rescue.

Rescue Buddies are stuffed animals—bears, birds, mooses, porpoises, turtles, and fishies—that give a terrified child something to cling to when they need it most.

First responders keep a batch of Rescue Buddies handy in squad cars, ambulances, and fire trucks. At house fires, domestic violence incidents, car crashes, and other tragedies, the Rescue Buddies are placed in the welcoming arms of young victims.

Creating a virtual team building event for unity

You and your team will actually assemble each cuddly fur baby during a virtual workshop that will make you feel like you’re together again. Together for a great cause. Together to encourage each other and build stronger relationships. No question: nothing solidifies the sense of togetherness like helping a child!

Creating a virtual team building event for charity

You don’t have to leave your home to leave a lasting legacy of kindness, heal suffering hearts, and make a huge impact on your neighborhood. That’s what genuine corporate social responsibility is all about.

 


How to Build a Multi-generational Team Without Conflict: DiSC

Today most American executives want to know how to build a multi-generational team without conflict. Unfortunately, the potential for workplace conflict has never been greater.

The contenders

The Baby Boomer generation was born between 1946 and 1964. The oldest members of this generation are already 74, but millions of Boomers in their 60s are still working and many can’t afford to retire until they’re 70!

Millennials aka Gen-Y were born between 1980 and 1994. The oldest Millennials are 40! That’s middle-age—gasp! And Gen-Z was born between 1995 and 2012. This means the oldest Gen-Zer is only 25.

“OK Boomer”  or Bust

“Never trust anyone over 30.” Jack Weinberg, the clever young activist who coined that phrase in 1964 is now in his 80s! Bet he never had to grapple with the dilemma of how to build a multi-generational team without conflict a day in his life, huh. 

Now that Baby Boomers are well into their 60s they’ve refined that snarky slogan a bit: “Never trust anyone under 50.” Not very sage wisdom when you consider that Millennials are the largest demographic in the American workforce—and these are  Baby Boomer-babies! 

With the addition of Gen-Z, you’re no longer looking at a boxing match between Boomers and Millennials. It’s more like a 3-ring circus in which it’s hard to forecast who the winner will be.

Age is more than a number

No self-respecting Boomer would have gone to a job interview donning neon purple hair. Duh! No self-respecting Millennial questions the reality of climate change. Duh!

And Gen-Zers really don’t want to hear about the good old days when Boomers worked their way up the corporate ladder [after squandering their youth railing against the corporate machine.] And that’s probably for 2 reasons: 

  1. Baby Boomers are now part of the machine! 
  2. And unlike Boomers, Gen-Z youth will be the first generation in American history to have a lower quality of life than their parents or grandparents! That’s hardly a legacy Boomers should be proud of!

Sadly Millennials and Gen-Zers have a lot in common: Unimaginably expensive college tuition and crushing school loan debt.  Limited affordable housing. A marginalizing political landscape. Environmental justice. Sexism, racism, and gender-orientation clashes. Oh and let’s not forget COVID-19.

These young people—the Millennials, as well as the Gen-Zers, face a formidable mash-up of issues most Baby Boomers didn’t have to think about in their youth—at least not all at once!

Mixed values lead to mixed signals

GenZers accuse Millennials of complaining about “adulting.” Yep, that’s a word now and it means behaving like a grown-up! Millennials accuse GenZers of being anarchists—they don’t pay taxes yet, so they don’t value [fill in the blank]. And of course, neither group likes the Boomers who aren’t upset about that one bit. 

And yet this clash of the titans can’t play out in the office every day without the corporate culture becoming too toxic for any one to survive, much less thrive.

From battleground to common ground

How to build a multi-generational team without conflict? First, identify what each group has in common. Behind every snarky jab is a blind spot of misunderstanding and that kind of ignorance isn’t bliss for either party.  

People reject what they don’t understand. DiSC personality profile training can create the common ground you and your staff need to build or maybe even deconstruct your team. Team building is relational which means people must learn to relate to one another. The 4 personality types proscribed by DiSC—Dominant, Influential, Steadfast or Support, and Conscientious—are the building blocks with which you can begin this process.

DiSC can translate why people think, say, and do the things they do. With a Conscientious colleague, what may appear to be stubbornness may actually be fear of the unknown. An Influencer may not be schmoozing; they may earnestly seek to rally the team around a challenging project.

With insight into different personality traits, friendships can grow. A Steadfast Baby Boomer’s reluctance to try new technology could become a teachable moment with a Dominant Millennial. The Boomer and the Millennial can practice the patience and other interpersonal skills they’ll master during their DiSC training sessions. 

DiSC personality profile training can open the eyes and minds of your staff—Boomers, Millennials, and GenZers alike. Gradually they may come to understand, accept, and even appreciate each other.


Why Team Building Events Are Important In A Crisis

The current pandemic would make a fantastic blockbuster summer movie—if it weren’t real. When everything around you changes at breakneck speed, you and your team need to be grounded, anchored, and reassured. That’s why team building events are important during a crisis—actually especially in a crisis!

Life in the fast lane

Keeping a business afloat during an economic shutdown, transforming your business model on the fly; adjusting to a remote workforce; reassuring investors and other stakeholders. In this perfect storm, CEOs are expected to understand current trends that change by the hour and translate them into a believable forecast for the future. 

This confluence of nightmare scenarios is a prescription for CEO burnout if there ever was one. They’ve got to be strong but empathetic, masterful but reassuring—all without falling apart emotionally or psychologically themselves. The S on their capes once stood for “Superman,” but today it stands for “Stressed!”

Courage and compassion

Some top dogs are stepping up to the plate with the courage and compassion of a lot of first responders. Many have fully embraced the culture of remote workforce management and have supported their workers while they adjust. 

A number of them have given up their paychecks and bonuses in order to protect their employees. That kind of generosity is terrific if you can afford it and should be applauded! But if you can’t afford such heroics, you can still make a sizeable emotional investment in your staff and have a positive impact on your community at the same time.

Hope and healing

Having a safe place to show and share your humanity is another reason why team building events are important. They can help your staff get to know you personally and you can see them as husbands, wives, parents, hobbyists, and activists. Learning about their passions outside the office can translate into a  wonderful team bonding opportunity. And you can also take a pulse check on where they are psychologically and emotionally during these tumultuous times. 

We all need a way to decompress and destress. Some of us even need to reevaluate our jobs, our long term personal goals, and even life itself. We all need hope. And some of us need healing. The best way to receive both yourself is to give hope and healing to someone else. Heavy hearts united in a shared purpose heal faster. That’s one more reason why team building events are important.

Charitable team building events are reciprocal

Givers receive as much benefit as recipients. For one thing, when you focus on someone else’s problems your own problems seem smaller, less threatening, and not nearly as urgent.

And you and your staff don’t have to go out in order to reach out. Thanks to the pandemic, virtual charitable team building is now a viable thing. And it works! Bikes, wheelchairs, school supplies,  and sports gear. Military care packages, food, and pet care supplies—you can donate any or all of these much-needed gifts to your neighbors.

Magnovo’s online charitable workshops can promote team unity at a time when your team may be feeling fragmented. And we will partner with you and a local social services organization to distribute your generous donations.  

And as for you, courageous but overworked manager— nobody will benefit more than you! Kindness matters and yours will be felt throughout your community because good news travels fast. And no doubt your staff’s morale will soar. But most of all, a virtual charitable team building event will be good medicine for your own soul. And frankly, you deserve it!

 

 

 


How To Build a Crisis Management Team? DiSC It!

How to build a crisis management team until things return to normal? Your best return on investment today may be to redefine what you mean by return.

The word “return” implies going back to something. Its focus—however rosy or bleak—is on the past. Planning on the future requires visionary courage, adaptability, and flexibility in order to make the old new again. No time to pine for the past. This is the moment to reboot, regroup, reorganize, and reconfigure. 

 Obviously, the big goal during this global crisis is to keep providing goods and services, maintaining customer or client relationships, meeting quotas, and making profits. But how can you navigate through all of the tumultuous changes in your industry, your market share, and your supply chain, without your company imploding? That’s the biggest question.

In order to assess the scope of the crisis and its potential impact on your team—not just your company, but the people who make it work—you have to explore a lot of smaller questions.

Reconfiguration questions

  • Can everyone on your staff work remotely? If so how will that affect morale?
  • How can you facilitate a sense of work-life balance when their home is also their office?
  • How comfortable are you and the other managers with letting staffers set boundaries, e.g. work hours, breaks, and email or text availability?
  • How can you help them set up a workstation separated or partitioned from their living space?

Retooling questions

  • If yours is a silo-culture, how willing are you to open up access to more information and to certain tools? 
  • How can you help managers give up some of their “turf” without making them feel their place in the pecking order is threatened?
  • What can you do to smooth the transition from territoriality and siloing to open-sourcing and inclusion?
  • How can you phase in that process and provide the necessary training to use new tools efficiently?
  • What software programs can you invest in, and what “new best practices” can you adopt in order to replicate the positive attributes of the company culture you enjoyed onsite? 
  • What new skills will your staff need to master now? What should the learning curve be?
  • How readily does your staff make decisions collaboratively, on the fly?
  • How well supported are your workers when they want to take risks and innovate?

Management consultants at McKinsey & Company recently posited the following:

…we believe that the next step in the response of businesses cannot be thought of as a phase at all. It will be open-ended rather than fixed in time. A better mental model is to think about developing a new “muscle”: an enterprise-wide ability to absorb uncertainty and incorporate lessons into the operating model quickly. The muscle has to be a “fast-twitch” one, characterized by a willingness to change plans and base decisions on hypotheses about the future—supported by continually refreshed microdata about what’s happening, for example, in each retail location. And the muscle also needs some “slow-twitch” fibers to set long-term plans and manage through structural shifts.

How to build a crisis management team? Agility!

Today the word “agile” in the American marketplace has a whole new multi-dimensional meaning. Mom-and-pop businesses as well as global conglomerates must embrace the concept in order to respond quickly and efficiently to constant changes. 

DiSC develops agility

When it comes to traumatic fluctuations Magnovo is a veteran at resilience and shock absorbency. How to build a crisis management team? If you need help answering this question, Magnovo can field this and many others.

For starters: Do you know who among your team works best under stress? To build your crisis management team—the people who can help meet the challenges you currently face—you need to know each one personally and to assess their skillset with fresh eyes.

That’s where DiSC personality profile training can help. DiSC stands for Dominant, Influential, Supportive, and Conscientious—the 4 basic personality types we all exhibit. DiSC training can help you:

  • Understand what each of your employees is feeling right now and why—based on their specific personality type.
  • Identify the ones who are best equipped to help you deal with the crisis.
  • Reorganize and then reboot so that everyone feels more fully understood, and more valued than ever before. 

 


Why Do Team Building Events?

Why do team building events? To recover 

Whether onsite or virtually, the elephant in nearly every company boardroom is fear! COVID19 has transformed every nook and cranny of the American entrepreneurial landscape leaving fear in its wake. Team building events can help us all recover our sense of reality and stability in a very unreal, unpredictable world.

The Twilight Zone in living color

The American economy is making history every day—but not in a good way. 

At 15 percent in April, unemployment in the United States is now as bad as it was during the Great Depression of 1929. And the picture just gets bleaker. From cars to clothes, sales are plummeting. 

On a month-to-month basis, March 2020’s 8.7 percent drop in retail sales is alarming. In fact, it’s the largest drop since the Census Bureau began to track them! A 2 trillion dollar coronavirus stimulus bill has provided a temporary lifeline for millions of struggling families—but this relief is just that, temporary. 

Viral videos of people fighting over toilet paper should be a joke—but they’re not. They’re real. Surreal. One of my old TV favs, the Twilight Zone has come horribly to life! 

Nevertheless, life does go on, and so can we—together. We’re better together. It’s how we’re built. And nothing bonds us together better than a common focus. That’s where a  team building event can help.

Why do team building events? To reboot and retool

A complete systemic shutdown requires a reboot. The virtual business model could be a virtual pain in the neck, or it could be a fantastic opportunity to explore new ways of doing things. Team building should be about collaboration, inclusion, brainstorming, and creativity—these are the attributes that can really transform a group of people into a cohesive team.

Consider a staff survey of what is and isn’t working for them while working from home during this social distancing norm. It could make everyone feel more connected again. And this may be a great time to retool certain procedures and policies to make them more flexible, you know, like a virtual “break glass in case of emergency” kit.

Why do team building events? To restore connectedness

In spite of their best efforts, many managers are struggling to make their workers feel less adrift and more grounded. That need for stability, the sense of being anchored is probably subliminal, but nonetheless universal throughout corporate America.

Daily uncertainties generated by the pandemic can also generate fear and a sense of powerlessness. Hopelessness. Fortunately, nothing is more empowering than kindness. When you take your eyes off of yourself and help someone who’s in worse shape, your view of the world changes. Brightens. 

Virtual charitable team building events are the perfect way to restore corporate culture and help neighbors in need in your community.  For example, in addition to donating meals to health care workers and other heroic first responders, your colleagues could provide some comforting gifts to hospital patients.

For some of the COVID sufferers in your city, you could coordinate the donation of puzzles, books, journals, stationery, and magazines. Chapstick, lotions, aromatherapy gels, and other toiletries. Doctor-approved snacks and nick-nacks are always welcome. Fuzzy footies and flannel blankets can be as consoling to ailing adults as they are to most little kids. 

Why do team building events? To inspire hope

Thanks to COVID, pet therapy is also in the headlines. While this form of therapy isn’t new, we’ve all developed a heightened awareness of just how comforting pets have become to their lockdown families. In fact, animal shelters across the country have reported a serious uptick in adoptions since the pandemic started. What wonderful news when so much of what we hear is so bad!

No doubt, there are lots of people who would love to adopt a cat or dog but can’t afford the expense. Pet parenting is a lot like people parenting—the costs add up! Even before the pandemic, the initial cost of pet adoption could cost more than a thousand bucks during that first year—and that’s way out of reach for lots of cash-strapped families.

Your team could donate pet care products for an animal shelter to gift a prospective pet owner. Leashes. Fluffy beds and bedding. Water and food bowls. Scratching posts. Chew toys. Treats. This starter kit can bridge the financial gap and make it easier for a family to make that commitment.

 Charitable team building events can sow seeds of hope and healing in troubled, anxious hearts—for both the donors and the recipients.


What Would a Good Manager Do To Build Team Spirit? DiSC

What would a good manager do to build team spirit?  Embrace change!

Under normal circumstances,  a few happy hours, bonuses, and kudos would go a long way to boost morale. Of course, normal circumstances once meant that everyone was under the same roof, in the same room. But right now we’re all looking at “normal circumstances” in the rearview mirror. And the new normal has been very disconcerting for millions of workers.

According to a recent survey, 70 percent of the respondents said they’re more stressed than they’ve ever been in their careers. And pharmacists around the country report a decided uptick in the number of prescriptions for depression, anxiety, and insomnia.

According to a 2017 survey by Mental Health America, workplace mental health problems result in as much as 500 billion dollars of lost productivity annually. Note: this was published 2 years before Covid19.

Translation: mental health support for workers must become a crucial component in business models around the country.

What would a good manager do to build team spirit? Unmask!

Yes, social distancing may require masks and gloves, but in this new business paradigm, it’s time to unmask and learn how to be human together so that we can work together.

More than ever, employees need to feel grounded, valued, and supported. That will require a personalized leadership style. For many executives, that’s a daunting thought. Some may be too territorial to leave their ivory towers. Others may be willing to humanize their approach to management but simply don’t know how to go about it. Fortunately, there’s an app for that called DiSC personality profile training.

DiSC is the ultimate widget for employers to better understand their employees. We’re all an admixture of 4 basic personality profiles: Dominant, Influential, Steadfast or Supportive, and Conscientious.

Insights into each one of these personality profiles can help bosses understand themselves and their workers better—and that’ll make working together a lot easier! Plus, DiSC can provide tools to help managers identify those employees who may be suffering emotional distress right now and learn how to support them.

What would a good manager do to build team spirit? Be teachable

As an executive, insights into your own personality profile will open your eyes to your own strengths and weaknesses.  DiSC training can improve your self-awareness and make you more teachable. 

It can teach you how to approach a Dominant employee differently than a Conscientious one and inspire each to do their best work for the team.  And with a better understanding of each employee’s behavior and work style, you can begin to take calculated risks. 

For example, you can risk building trust.  Ah! The “T” word! That can be a big issue if you’re used to micromanaging or shadowing your staff. But trust builds teams so it’s worth the risk. Trust must also be reciprocal and DiSC can facilitate that. Managers often expect the worst from people—and per the proverbial self-fulfilling prophecy, they get what they expect. 

With personality profile training, you’ll learn to expect the best because you will learn how to recognize the best in each employee. Their talents, skills, and strengths will come into sharper view. This builds trust and empowers workers to do their best.  And where you see weaknesses, DiSC training makes it safe to point them out and help your worker upgrade their emotional and professional IQ.

What would a good manager do to build team spirit? Be a mensch!

Mensch is a Yiddish word meaning “person of integrity or honor.” The distance created by the current lockdown makes it crucial that you create a different kind of closeness. Team-building requires authentic relationship-building based on trust, support, and acceptance across the board—no matter where people are on the corporate ladder.

Leadership based on integrity and honor will inspire trust, respect, and loyalty. If you make your expectations clear and fair and give employees a chance to give you feedback without being afraid of pushback, each worker will feel safe under your leadership and will learn to respect you more. 

And here’s another challenge for you as a leader: risk empowering your staff. If you give them permission to explore new ideas—even the wonky ones, you’ll fan the flames of creativity.  This can build a level of emotional confidence, personal autonomy, and professional accountability. And that will benefit the whole company through improved morale, increased productivity, and decreased turnover.

Help your staff embrace this new business paradigm! Make mental health support resources available to them without the stigma.  Develop virtual team bonding exercises to help refresh those who are suffering from 24/7 pandemic news fatigue, isolation, and loneliness.

Seek out fresh virtual opportunities for their professional development. Help each one achieve a better work-life balance. Flex their schedules and diversify their work assignments. That’s what a good manager would do to build team spirit.


How To Build And Manage Remote Teams

How to build and manage remote teams during the COVID19 pandemic? Start with a reality check: this is the new normal! Time to make a fresh start!

No more rush hour traffic, lower gas prices, no more office-attire constraints. No more trying to look busy while watching the clock! Woohoo! Yippee-NOT!

For millions of people, the luxury of not having to go to the office is actually a misery. Being on lockdown and working from home is causing as much stress as pressing through gridlocked traffic and shlepping to work did back in the pre-CCOVID19 days.

Many are clamoring to get out and get their old lives back—jogging, partying, beachcombing, bar-hopping, barber shopping, theater-going, gym-jamming, mani-pedicuring—living life on their own terms without fear!

And the billions in lost revenue to companies large and small makes it really tempting to break free in order for people to recover their sanity and for businesses to recoup lost profits.

Unfortunately for those of us who are holding our breaths waiting for the good old days to return, we’ll probably turn blue and blackout before that happens. According to medical experts, social distancing saves lives. So remote entrepreneurship and team building are the new normal—at least for now.

How to build and manage remote teams—own the new normal

So instead of “waiting to exhale,” let’s take a deep breath and regroup.

Decentralized, office-less work-life is not new to everyone. Before COVID19 nearly 4 million workers telecommuted at least half of the time each week. As of 2017,  as many as 8 million employees worked remotely fulltime.

The fact is that from boutique companies to behemoth corporations, telecommuting saves corporate America billions of dollars every year, to the tune of  $11,000 per worker. How? By reducing or eliminating costs from absenteeism, electricity, water, building maintenance, janitorial services, on-site security, furniture, parking, office supplies, and other expenses. In many ways, telecommuting is better for the environment and the economy. 

Nevertheless, getting used to it is still going to be a challenge for newcomers to the scheme. After all, most of us don’t have to think about, equipment availability and liability, or internet bandwidth, and cybersecurity—in our homes!

How to build and manage remote teams—reboot your leadership style

The great irony of this conflagration is that social distancing and sheltering in place are driving leaders to reboot their leadership styles.

Communication and collaboration look and feel differently now. Assessing employee productivity must be measured differently as well. Remote team building and management will require leaders to focus more on employees as people than as cogs in a company machine.

DiSC personality training may be the most powerful tool you can have in your arsenal as you help each of your team members navigate through this strange season.

DiSC stands for the 4 basic personality types: Dominant, Influential, Steadfast/Supportive, and Conscientious. Understanding these personality types can help you recalibrate your leadership approach based on the temperaments of your staff. Each has a dominant personality profile and DiSC personality training will teach you how to recognize it.

How to build and manage remote teams—humanize your leadership style

Developing “soft skills” is a hard concept for some Type-A managers to embrace, but they’re crucial to leading remote teams.

For some workers, the solitude will be paradise because they like working alone more than on teams. For others, the solitude will be numbing and the silence will be deafening. They need the noise and social contact to stimulate their grey cells—so for them being on lockdown will feel like a cell-a jail cell!

DiSC training will help you assess each employee’s work environment, and any needs for support—technical, workflow, emotional, or otherwise.

And DiSC can heighten your own level of self-awareness by identifying your personality profile. This insight can help you determine which of your personal attributes to draw on as you deal with individual staff members. And indeed, you will have to individualize your leadership in order to maintain team culture—yet another irony in the COVID19 era.

DiSC training will help you learn how to listen and actually hear more fully what each staffer is saying…as well as what they’re not saying. You’ll learn how to recognize grief and loneliness in some of your workers, and most importantly, you’ll be able to encourage them.

Remote team building and management require compassion, sensitivity, and patience. These are foreign concepts in the traditional workplace. But the pandemic has turned tradition on its head. DiSC personality profile training will help everyone adjust to this brave new world.


Charitable Team Building In A Crisis

Charitable team building in a crisis can help your community at its greatest hour of need and develop stronger bonds among your workers than ever before.

“Don’t find fault. Find a remedy.”-Henry Ford

How has the pandemic affected your ability to serve your clients? Don’t try to fake it, with a bogus “marketing spin” because, in this current chaotic climate, you won’t make it!

Be as honest as you can be and own the new normal of COVID19 along with them. Explore how their needs for your goods or services may have changed. Then look for ways that you can partner with your customers to weather the storm together.

One way to facilitate this kind of brainstorming is to launch a full-on campaign to better learn how to adjust your leadership style during this crisis. Your business model may have to change, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing if your relationships with customers grow stronger.

“In every crisis, doubt or confusion, take the higher path – the path of compassion, courage, understanding and love.” -Amit Ray

Ironically, charitable team building in a crisis is a golden opportunity to ramp up your commitment to corporate social responsibility. Now is the time to increase the company’s goodwill throughout your city!

First of all, look at how COVID19 is impacting your town and identify ways you can help. Next, conduct a marathon of online charitable team building workshops that literally blanket your whole community.

For example, local first responders need all the support they can get. One way you can help is to provide toys for distribution to sick, injured, or abused children. Working remotely from home, your colleagues can send a batch of Rescue Buddies to police officers and other emergency care heroes to give to kids they encounter during fires, domestic violence incidents, and other traumas. These so-called Rescue Buddies are stuffed bears, birds, and other BFF-beasties made for cuddling by kids who need something wonderful to cling to. 

Next up: through the magic of online technology, your team can conduct a Bike-A-Thon arranging for the delivery of brand new bikes to a local charity like the Boys and Girls Club for distribution to needy kids. They may not be able to go far, for the sake of social distancing, but they can ride in their yards and enjoy a bit of fresh air. 

From coast to coast, the ranks of the unemployed have exploded and so have the number of hungry mouths to feed! Millions of these people have never had to confront the trauma of unemployment and hunger and most never been to a food bank in their lives!

You can help ease their anguish and boost your employees’ morale at the same time. No doubt the food banks in your area will welcome any available help to serve this increasing need. So why not donate a dinner or two or more so that some newly cash-strapped families can have a healthy meal. 

And in some cities, teachers are joining forces to provide food for kids who are on lockdown at home. Why? Because for millions of poor children the only meals they received came from the school itself. Here again, is an opportunity for charitable team building in a crisis to save the day and fill some hungry bellies.

“A leader leads, and a boss drives.”–Theodore Roosevelt

Your “boss” instincts, notwithstanding, your leadership skills have never been more desperately needed or sorely tested than they are right now. 

Magic Johnson said, “When you face a crisis, you know who your true friends are.” Step up and show your community that your company is a true friend who’s willing to stay the course with them throughout this calamity.


How To Lead During a State of Emergency

How to lead during a state of emergency—depends on your point of view.

Glass half-empty view: The current pandemic has bombarded us all with more information than we can filter. Social media hysteria, conspiracy theories, and news updates—some legitimate; some “fake”— they leave our heads reeling and our hearts pounding. 

Fear is spreading so thickly you can cut it with a  knife. And when fear escalates it also paralyzes. According to this worldview, the answer to the question of how to lead during a state of emergency is probably “To heck with leading;  just try to keep the company from sinking!”

Glass half-full view: The national mandate to shelter-in-place has provided millions of us with solitude for self-reflection. At home, we have the luxury of hitting the remote and silencing the cacophony of voices spewing facts and stats at us 24/7.

According to this worldview, the answer to the question of how to lead during a state of emergency is probably “What a golden opportunity to embrace innovation!”

How to lead during a state of emergency—Dream big!

COVID19 is a complete game changer! If as a company, you try to hold your breath until it goes away, you’ll implode! Business-as-usual is almost a distant memory. 

But that can be a good thingif you’re open to it. The great American workplace is reinventing itself daily, which means we’re no longer trapped by the business protocols or traditions of the past! 

True, we are trapped in our homes, but again, that can be a good thingif you’re open to it. Getting used to the solitude can be daunting for those of us who can’t think without some kind of hustle-and-bustle around us. But if you embrace it, you may find yourself in the midst of some pretty constructive daydreams. 

“If only I could____.” How would you fill in that blank? Have you had a few ideas you’ve wanted to pitch to the higher-ups? Well now may be the time to polish them off and shoot them upline.

Remember how many times you yearned for a better work-life balance? Well voila here’s your chance as a leader, to give yourself and your staff the flexible hours you’ve dreamed of for ages.

Of course, the expression that “the grass is always greener,” is true, so neither you nor your staff should be surprised if it actually takes more time management skills and discipline now that you’re at home. 

Brainstorming vs. commiserating

Instead of holding online meetings during which you commiserate and pine for the good “old” days, use this time to brainstorm innovative ideas.

For example, your company has been successful up to now. Celebrate that fact and think about what did you did right and how you can keep on doing it? No doubt, there’s an app for that! And if there ain’t one, well create one! Dare to be great! Innovate!

Let your team go wild tossing ideas about! Provide the freedom to throw caution to the wind by empowering them to take risks. That is, make it safe for them to share ideas—even the wonky ones. And reward the failures! Yes, that’s right! Reward everyone who’s willing to risk the “stigma” of failure by congratulating them for thinking outside the box or even by reshaping the box!  

Regroup and reset for better team building

Way back in 2019 during the typical daily grind, your familiarity with each member of your team was probably project-deadline-driven. This is the perfect time to reassess your talent pool and identify some skills and talents that may not have been obvious in the board room.

A company-wide DiSC personality training campaign would be an ideal way to start. DiSC means Dominant, Influential, Steadfast, and Conscientious— the 4 basic personality types we all share in some measure.

DiSC training sessions are safe places to explore the inner workings of a person’s character without their feeling defensive, self-protective, or guarded.

The more people understand each other—what makes them behave the way they do; why they communicate the way they do—the easier it is to work with them. When you know what makes a person tick, you know what to expect from them—and what not to expect. 

How to lead during a state of emergencydon’t let the crisis define you.

One of the benefits of the DiSC personality profile training is that you’ll become more self-aware. You will recognize weaknesses and learn ways to strengthen them. But most importantly, you will begin to appreciate your strengths and how to maximize them when they’re needed most!

You were a great leader before COVID19 and you still are. Own that fact and enjoy the journey of discovering just how much greater you can be!


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