Next year, Niki and I will celebrate 25 years of marriage and it got us thinking about having a celebration. A time to reflect on our lives, accomplishments, and plan for the future. For the most part, it has been an awesome journey; however, during Covid, we were challenged by unfortunate family issues, which took us a little off course.
After spending time talking and studying the issues that were taking place in our family, we began to see the correlation between our family and the organizations we support. You see, our families are the first organization we’re introduced to. In our families, we learn systems of communication, how to handle conflict (or not), and develop our values and beliefs. Our parents or older caregivers have been assigned the CEOs of our Family Firm and somewhere in the process, most commit (vow) to support and develop the family the best way they know how. As Niki and I travel and talk to leaders and educators, we share some of the unfortunate things that have happened in our family post-COVID as a way to connect with what others may be going through during this time.
Like many of our families, our organizations have had a challenging time navigating through all the changes that the Covid-19 pandemic highlighted in our fragile professional relationships.
Think about it – we were physically separated for some time from our friends and loved ones, organizations witnessed the “Great Resignation”, and the country is experiencing a mental health crisis. Covid broke the connection and intimacy we once shared and took for granted, which has taken a toll on our mental toughness.
I believe that to strengthen our fragile relationships within our teams, leaders must renew their leadership vows. I see this as a celebratory moment for leaders to reaffirm their commitment to the mission and vision of their organization and energize the team to support those values. We all must re-commit!
These renewals should be heartfelt in a way to celebrate each team member's commitment to the promises they made to the organization. Like a couple renewing their marriage vows, organizational renewals should be unique and meaningful as you remember the “why” you decided to join the team in the first place.
A few things everyone should remember before recommitting:
Honor the Past
Go back to the first day you were informed you landed the role. Think about how you felt the day you joined the team. Celebrate your accomplishments – big and small and all the wonderful memories you’ve had.
Embrace the Present
Celebrate where you are today by thinking about all you’ve had to overcome to be here today. Think about all the wonderful people who have helped you along the way and how you’ve helped one another during this challenging time. BE Grateful.
Reaffirm the Course for the Future
Take a good look at your vision and mission statements and think about how you will accomplish these goals. Remember your vision is still possible, even if you must think of a new way to achieve your desired outcome. Adopt a can-do attitude!
Remember your vows are promises that you not only make to yourself but to your organization. Although sometimes unspoken, you are expressing an intent to fulfill this promise.
We always have a choice, what will yours be today?