Return? To what orbit?

By Cristina Sendino, appreciative facilitator of Madavi the YES Company

And what do we do now? I have kept repeating these 5 words for a few weeks, so that I do not forget them after all we have lived in the last months.

What calms me is that as I speak to others directors and clients who have become friends, they tell me that the same thing is happening to them. That makes me think that there are others who are not yet friends or clients who are also in the same situation.

The fact is that in these last months incredible things have occurred.

As people we have adapted much more than we hoped for and at a speed which makes us have small super-heroe powers (respecting, from the heart, those who have been in the front line).

It has been like taking the lid off a pot which was full of exemplary attitudes, of incredible values, and of stories which fill one full of pride.

Personal and professional priorities have been redefined simultaneously. Indeed, despite being physically separated the relationships have become closer and more humane.

In many conversations in which I have taken part we have coincided that we have put the focus on the priorities. The pragmatic attitude has become the unquestionable protagonist. It was a question of doing and moving forward despite everything.

In these weeks we have seen teams uniting, people collaborating with generosity and giving the best of themselves, overcoming uncertainties and fears. Many have given all and more.

It was necessary to act and for that it has been essential to be more autonomous. The management teams have with confidence permitted people to act, and that implication and responsibility has led to obtaining results in record time.

Thinking about all these things I believe that those three factors have made people be more motivated and have happened at the same time and in a more accelerated fashion

We had autonomy and that as Dan Pink says, leads directly to commitment. And to become more involved. Moreover, we have learnt a lot, some of us to manage new tools, others to lead from a distance, others to listen to people in a different way. I know people who have done courses and who have connected with others who wants to share things. Competing brand names who have started to speak and learn from each other.

There was a cause that was larger than any of us.

Accompanying those two factors and at the same time connecting them, there was purpose, the consciousness of the impact on society of the decisions taken, both as people and as companies. There existed a cause bigger than us. We were faced by something unknown which we did not know how to confront, and despite having suffered personally and having felt the magnitude of what was happening I dare to say that in general we were very motivated.

Society in general and organizations in particular are a combination of systems. A system which we should not forget is alive, made up by people who rose up, as if on a roller coaster, in an admirable fashion to see what was needed, to give, to share out, to accompany, to take care of, ultimately to do. The path of this roller coaster was also full of playful emotions, which kept changing and sometimes got out of control.

And now what do we do? We have started to go back, as if we were suddenly in space. In slow motion. The energy which moves us seems to be decreasing. As if we had a leak in our space suite. Return? To what orbit?

We want people and teams to continue to be as connected and that they use their autonomy in favour of the company, the new responsibility to overcome and go forward as well as recovering and obtaining excellent results.

And of the initiatives that we have put into action which has worked the best? Which are the ones that we would like to continue to happen? Which of those things do we wish to convert and keep permanently? What attitudes and values are going to boost our culture and our business at the same time?

Other questions also arise:  combine teleworking and office? How do we lead teams? What is best for business?

The humility of recognizing that one person alone does not have the answers is precisely the answer to these questions.

All change requires that the whole system is aligned.

And, moreover, that that answer is not the same for everybody. It is necessary to admit that all change, and it could not be any other way, requires that the whole system be aligned. A representative group can answer all these questions and thus, parting from what HAS worked, they feel implicated to create and share the same attractive image of the future.

Allowing them to design together makes them become mobilized and they make their own the plan and that the motivation to put it into effect arises. Once again they charge their batteries and take off self-propelled.

In this manner the three factors come into play (autonomy, learning and purpose) and some others such as an equal say and freedom of choice.

What is the result of all of this? Collective action with initiatives that make the change easier. That the results come quicker and simultaneously. That the path is more energized and more motivating, and naturally, the transformation comes to stay.

It is about acting on the culture and the business and at the same time aligning the strengths towards the aspirations.

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