Leading Through Crisis: How to Stay Calm and in Control

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If there’s anything the past few years have reminded us of, it’s that times of trial and tribulation place heavy demand on leaders. True leadership demands calm and composure during difficult periods, and with the right skillset under their belt, experienced leaders can help guide their teams forward when it matters most.

At Pivot HR, we know that making the right call during challenging times can often feel overwhelming, especially for those that are new to positions of heightened authority and executive leadership. Leadership coaching is a great way to equip your management with the tools to succeed when it matters most. Below, we’ll cover some of the most important attributes to keep in mind/demonstrate when handling crises in the workplace. Read on to learn more!

Look for Opportunities

When things get difficult, it’s easy to become fixated on the challenge, as well as the negative implications ahead. While it’s certainly important to be vigilant and aware of any fallout that could occur from an incident or circumstance, it’s just as important (if not more so) to look for the positive outcomes you can achieve along the way. Strong leaders know that there is just as much opportunity as there is a challenge in any adverse scenario, and are able to help their team focus on achievable goals rather than get sidetracked by negativity.


Flexibility and adaptability are essential qualities for leadership at all times, but they become particularly vital attributes in times of crisis. As the Covid era has reminded us, there are often times when things don’t go our way, and having the fortitude, as well as the aptitude to pivot as needed with grace is crucial when it comes to overcoming adversity.

Pace Yourself

Crisis and challenging times are exhausting. As any weathered leader will tell you, if you neglect to exercise kindness towards yourself (as well as your team) when times get tough, burnout isn’t far around the corner. Remember that very few issues can be resolved in the blink of an eye; pace yourself accordingly and build in opportunities to spend time doing whatever it is that helps you stay most centred. From restoring work-life balance to working out, speaking with career or personal counsellors, and even taking advantage of your hard-earned vacation time, the best leaders know that caring for themselves is non-negotiable and set the tone for the rest of their team members to follow suit when it comes to health and wellness.


Don’t be a “saviour”! One of the hardest elements of being a leader can be knowing when to let go and pass off responsibilities to others. The best leaders know that no one is an island, and when it comes to navigating turbulence, you must rely on your team to survive. Take advantage of the skills and expertise that your peers and employees bring to the equation and empower everyone to rise to the occasion as a cohesive unit instead of feeling like you have to carry the weight of the storm by yourself.


Finally, the key to perseverance during times of crisis often ends up being one “simple” practice: patience. Even though it can be incredibly difficult, if not disparaging at times to face challenge after challenge and deal with change after change, if you want to lead with strength, patience is your friend. Having a clear vision of your goals, how your team can work together, and what you believe the future can hold makes it easier to face the unknown and to remember that eventually, one way or another, this, too, shall pass.

Need Help Building a Solid Foundation?

If you’re looking to navigate the aftermath of a previously difficult period, need help dealing with current struggles, or want to make sure you’re protected in the long term, Pivot HR is here to help. Our leadership coaching services are tailored to each client to ensure your team of managers and executives have the tools they need to help everyone succeed. With decades of experience behind our team, we believe that every business and organization deserves guidance and support when navigating trying times.

Don’t miss your opportunity to build a better foundation for today and tomorrow with the help of our leadership coaching and a full range of HR services available for clients in British Columbia as well as Canada-wide. Contact our team today to learn how we can help you reset and renew your leadership skills!

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