COVID-19 Proves Business IS Personal
"Whatever else anything is, it ought to begin by being personal."
to quote Kathleen Kelly in "You've Got Mail."
I've been thinking about that quote a lot over the past six weeks as we have had conferences cancelled and business travel squashed by this pandemic. Although I have run a remote office for more than six years, this is a strange and difficult time for businesses all over the world and even for me it is oddly quiet.
I miss people. I miss hugs from a colleague on an exhibit show floor as we laugh and catch up since our last meeting. I miss airplanes - even economy class. I miss hotels in yet another convention town. I miss meetings in those conference rooms that all look the same. I miss meeting clients for coffee or a beer.
We are social beings and this virus-age is proving that even in business, everything is personal. We feel more comfortable when we can shake hands over a deal or when we can put a hand on a colleagues' shoulder and reassure them that we will get through this together. Great leaders know that teamwork and interpersonal relations are more important than any spreadsheet or KPI. Individuals will pull together to accomplish anything if they feel connected. So if you lead a team of hundreds, or have a handful of subcontractors, never forget that this is PERSONAL.
Thank you COVID-19 for making my point.