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How to Be a Good Manager During an Economic Downturn

Posted April 16th, 2020

Being a great manager is always a challenge. But, when there’s an economic downturn, a daunting task can seem nearly impossible. The inherent degree of uncertainty influences employee moods. Various actions like layoffs and pay cuts – many of which may be genuinely necessary – exacerbate the negative feelings.

As a leader, you need to know how to navigate the challenges posed by an economic downturn. If you want to make sure you can rise to the task, here are some tips.

Make Objectivity and Fairness a Priority

When there’s a recession, managers have to make tough choices. In some cases, ensuring your emotions don’t influence your decisions is easier said than done. However, approaching every scenario with objectivity and fairness in mind is essential. Otherwise, you’re making a difficult situation worse.

Before you make any decisions, spend time gathering the facts. Next, evaluate your options and consider which approaches best align with the company’s priorities. Make the entire process as analytical as possible, ensuring you don’t let your feelings lead you down a path that isn’t ideal.

If possible, it’s wise to involve your team in the toughest decisions. Find out their views on the matter, including how various options would be perceived. That way, you can factor in their perspective before you make a choice, reducing the odds that they will be consequences you didn’t see coming.

Be as Open and Honest as Possible

Whether you need to discuss a decision, or simply share information about the current climate, strive to be open and honest. Let your team know how the company is doing and what direction it’s taking. Give them insights into possible consequences of those choices or obstacles that may come into play. Also, review any positives, such as previous decisions that generated great results.

The goal is to be transparent about the health of the organization and the nature of any decisions. When your employees feel informed, anxiety levels tend to fall. They know what to expect, so even bad news isn’t as hard to bear. Plus, this approach builds trust, ensuring your relationship with your team remains strong.

Make Sure You Walk the Walk

If your team is expected to deal with cuts, then you should join them in that part of the journey. When salaries fall, make sure yours does as well. If benefits are reduced, shoulder that burden along with your employees.

Removing yourself from situations that cause your employees doesn’t reflect well on a company leader. It creates a sense of separation, mainly because you aren’t dealing with the same challenges your workers are being forced to endure.

However, by walking the walk, you instill a sense of solidarity. Everyone is in it together and is making the same sacrifice. This can resonate with members of your team, increasing the odds that they’ll stick with you even when times are tough.

Call Bayside Solutions Today to See How We Can Help

Ultimately, being a good manager during an economic downturn is challenging, but it is doable. If you’d like to learn more about leading during difficult times, the team at Bayside Solutions can help. Contact us today and see how our leadership expertise can benefit you.

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