If 25 years ago someone would have told me that perspective and patience were two crucial leadership qualities, I would have disagreed – vehemently. I am not sure age has bestowed any increased wisdom, probably more trial and error (with a lot of error). Having the opportunity to see various crisis teams work through disruptive events over the past few years gives one some insight into managing these incidents.
Perspective covers many vital concepts, but the most important might be embracing diversity of thought or expertise. In a crisis, it is essential to bring your own experience and background to bear on the incident; it also helps the group make better decisions and develop more impactful mitigation strategies to be open to different ideas. Operations may want to address an issue that might need an IT or HR lens to create the best solution.
Patience is a characteristic, that on the surface, may seem contrary to crisis management. At its core, crisis management is about making the best decisions, given time and resource constraints at hand. Sometimes, a quick decision is not always the best (of course, safety concerns would be different – fire, active shooter, tornado, among others). The ability to analyze information, evaluate perspectives, and then make the right decision takes practice and patience. Fully understanding the situation is important, it can take time, and that awareness helps a crisis team make those decisions.
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