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Remote Working Webinar - Operating under Dimished Capacity

Eden Whitcomb
Billing Manager

'We're all working with diminshed capacity, whether we feel it or not.'

Maybe you're juggling home school as well as working.

Maybe you're trying to fit everything into reduced hours.

Or, like everyone else, its a natural response to the trying times that we find ourselves in.

Managers, business owner and even us as individuals need to understand that and try to avoid putting undues pressure on ourselves and others.

Eden Whicomb discusses this in more depth with Lisa Dempsey, CEO of Leadership Labs International and Co-Founder of HR Matters Podcast.

Eden: Welcome and thanks for joining us. You are here today because you believe that information and knowledge sharing is critical in a connected world.

Our goal with the show and company is to introduce high quality, actionable insights that will help both hiring managers and job seekers execute lean recruitment processes and gain industry knowledge to further enhance their careers.

Today, I am joined by leadership coach and Human Dynamics and Engineer with more than 20 years experience delivering results in fast paced global organizations, specifically working with purpose focused individuals, teams and businesses who want to make an effective and positive impact on the world.

Right now, she's the CEO of her own business, Leadership Labs, as well as an advisory member to the board of three other organizations. She also hosts her own podcast; HR Matters and provides low cost webinars to help organizations pivot through times of crisis and make working virtually more meaningful and impactful. I've been a fan of hers for some time and it's an honor to share the call with her today. So please welcome the winner the Gold  Award for her visionary leadership.Lisa Dempsey, CEO of Leadership Labs. 
Welcome to the show. Lisa, how you doing?
Lisa: Thanks so much for having me on Eden. It's a pleasure to be here with you. 
Eden: So what can companies be doing right now, I guess, to ensure that energy levels are high, energy wastage is low or as minimal as possible? Is there any kind of effective steps that you've taken with the companies that you are coaching around that obviously, as you're saying, the structure is important, having that transparency, but what else would you kind of advise people to be doing at the moment?
Lisa: Yeah, I think this is such an important question, because managing our energy levels is the most valuable thing that we have in any circumstance. But because it's even more important in times of crisis, there's a reality that we're facing right now of everybody is working with diminished resources. You know, our brains and bodies have been told, hey, there's danger out there. There's this invisible, teeny, tiny microscopic germ, you know, virus that can harm you and your family.
So that means that our brains and bodies are part of it has gone into a kind of crisis management and survival mode. So really, the majority of people are are working with slightly diminished resources, whether they realize it or not. You can't really kind of deny that the impact that that has. And it's just a very natural survival instinct.
So recognizing that, you know, even in the best of circumstances, even if you're doing everything absolutely right, you're going to be working with slightly diminished resources is really important because accepting that and accepting that, that means that everyone's going to have an individual response. There are going to be ups and downs. And just allowing the space for that, allowing the compassion for the reality of that is so important, because when people there's something that happens to us in our brains and bodies and this is a part of the neuroscience that I bring to to my coaching is just even being able to name it, being able to say, you know what, team?
Today I'm feeling really tired and feeling really stressed out. You know, I heard from a friend that somebody was really sick or heard something on the news that really disturbed me and made me think about things in a really different way. Whatever it is, just being able to name it and not be judged were it not have to go into problem solving or fixing that, but just call it out, brings huge relief and releases a huge amount of energy and stress.
So there's really that that knowing and accepting is is the first and most important step. Then, you know, it's again, about creating cohesion, you know, understanding that you as a team and as an organization can still create a number of things, even if you're working with diminished capacity and resources. But again, co creating that together with teams, asking people do they know what do they have available, allowing them to be a part of that thinking and creation process is so important because already there's a huge amount of uncertainty that's out there that also creates a diminished capacity in our brains because our brains really like to be able to predict. We like to. And it's an important way of how we think and how we create a lot of efficiency and effectiveness is by being able to predict based upon past experience. If A happens, then B is an appropriate response and is going to give us a desirable outcome of C. 
Right now we don't have prior experience that that we can work with in these circumstances. And so our prediction factors are greatly diminished. So we we have to go into sort of a hyper agile state of asking important questions, trying small things out, running small experiments and iterations, getting the feedback, see how that goes, and then recalibrating and going out and trying again the next day.
That also requires a lot more energy. But that's a little bit of it, especially in the first month. That was the most important thing for teams to be doing, was really trying small experiments, trying, you know, how are we going to work together remotely? What works, what times, what platforms, how can we connect, trying all of those experiments, seeing which ones worked while seeing which ones equally failed and then going out and trying again the next day was really important.
And so creating structure from nothing was really one of the first and most important things that that was needed to. Then you create a place of stability where you have just a little bit more predictability and you can build from there. But there are teeny tiny steps. And especially when we're used to having a certain amount of flow in our teams. Again, we're trying to predict that. Or if we meet with these people at these times, we'll be able to get these kinds of results when everything you know, it's like the you're playing a poker game and the card table has been turned over and all of the cards are up in the air.
You don't know you don't know where they're going to fall. So it's really hard to. Which actions to take? You just have to try different things. That's hard. But you there is learning in that and you are making progress. So value that and spend time with it and focus on that rather than the frustration of how things used to be or what it is that you're trying to predict.