Betazoid Leadership in a Locked Down Federation
Amy Jiménez Márquez presented “Betazoid Leadership in a Locked Down Federation” at Leadership By Design: Home Edition. Enjoy!
The following transcript may contain typographical errors. Please forgive any mistakes!
Thank you very much, appreciate it. And I also wanted to thank Russ, I wanna thank you for organizing all this in the Chicago can team for all the work you put into this, ’cause I know that you plan on the completely different conference and the one that you’re getting right now.
And thank everybody for taking the time to attend.
I hope everyone out there is safe and taking care of results.
So let me explain a little bit about data side, leadership, Molton Federation. For those of you who are not Star Trek fans, Diana Troy is the counselor on the Star Trek in enterprise, she’s a commander, and she is a bio… She’s half day is on half human now basis are telepathic, but because she’s half human that is temp down to empathetic, worse actually are empathic, where she can actually feel everybody else’s feelings and what put this in my mind, that’s gonna be called Compassionate earshot, but we already had… What was it?
On completed RSP there, there’s already so many talks within this conference about leadership and the way that we feel during, and I thought, If I not go with something a little bit different, and my husband shouted out from the peanut gallery, bad is wine leader shit up and I was like, Oh, okay, cool. ’cause we’re both huge nerds, so Dan, with her empathic ability really exhibits to me the balance between strength and compassion that you have to have as a leader, and I really, really identify with her empathic nature when you’re with a person who can kind of feel what they’re feeling what it means is having compassion for and providing advocacy for the people who report to you, and for years A… So let’s talk a little bit about what leadership looks like in the before times, so prior to March 2020, up till March 4th, I was working in my office and I… It staggered, depending on where you are, but before the pandemic and before the horrifying murder of George Floyd, leadership was complicated to begin with, it, most of us had the choice to be in person or the choice to work remote, we had the hallway conversations, we had face to-face interaction with our teammates, it was much simpler to be empathetic in real time when you’re face-to-face with people, and you can give the tough feedback in the moment like that as a leader, that the worst thing is always giving constructive feedback with somebody’s kind of goofing up, it’s even harder when you’re remote, when you’re in person, you can have coffee with them, you can humanize it, you can be face-to-face and express that humanity, design ideation workshops like this very stock image or design thinking… I don’t know if for a lot to say design thinking anymore, is that still a bad word now, I’m not sure if… But the nation workshop or much easier to do in person, now we’re trying to clue together tools like envision and Trello and different things to simulate that. Awareness was easy to have, breaks were easy to time and take, walking to different conference rooms built in a break during the day, it was much simpler for people to leave that outside world outside. For myself, I have this habit, I work in badged in secure areas, so my mental cue for the day to leave things outside that are personal and bring and start my professional day with when I badge in the office, I take my mental cue, I roll my shoulders back and say, Okay, all that crap outside, I gotta focus on work, so it’s much harder to do that when there’s no… I’m sorry, I’m trying to forward this thing, there’s no other place to go.
This is what my work environment is like. Right now, you can see this is actually a screen, it’s not just a clever background, my mother-in-law and this to me during Christmas, which I thought, What the heck am I gonna do with this beautiful screen? I have no place to put this, and now suddenly I can put this anywhere, and suddenly I have a pop-up office, so now we all are working with improvised work spaces in the home, unless you are lucky enough to work remotely regularly and how to set up office for, I would say many of us, at least the people that I’ve talked to, we kinda felt a drift, remote work with something we did on occasion, not something that we did all of the time, so working from home because we want to… That’s completely different than having to work from home because we’re a crisis because there’s pandemic, and on top of that, our school-aged children for those tests, we have them… We were having to school them from home, this was… I have a 14-year-old, an 16-year-old, I cannot help my son with Tacoma try.
My husband can barely, but it was really challenging to balance working time with living time, and especially when the kids basically felt like they were on an extended spring break, because if they’re at home, they’re on vacation, one thing that really stripping was his tweet manual web, you’re not working from home, you’re at home during a crisis, trying to work… So I share this out with my team members and said, Look, this is what we’re all going through… I completely understand it. We need to change the way we work.
So at some point… So when you’re at home, you have a completely different set of distractions than when you’re at work, as res mentioned a couple of times.
We have pets. We have cats. We have dogs. Some of us have a peacock that makes a lot of noise. The spring time marched through the end of a heaven, my Peacock was just walking whole-heartedly looking for love in all the wrong places, flirting with the chickens, so there was a lot of noise, a lot of distraction.
It is a completely different way to work, and your work hours tend to blend into your family time, so not only are these goof balls part of my life, but my son, my daughter, my husband, some people have multi-generational families with them, so it’s a completely different environment and taking that into account is something you have to do… Another thing that we gained from this was we got our commute times back, so we try to find different things to do with our common times.
Apparently, everyone in the world is baking Saro, I’m very proud of how my sardou has turned out. Apparently to the little lift up there is called ears. Never knew that, but some of us might start a Twitter account for our Peacock because, hey, you extra time one, and my daughter wanted to repaint her room, she had a glimmer, so she wanted to make it more fun. Some of us might spend an inordinate amount of time with our families playing Animal Crossing, but this kind of finding these other habits is a way for us to kind of exert control where we can, and it’s a healthy thing to do, as long as you don’t spend 400 hours in a given month on Animal Planet, the Animal Crossing.
Anyway, so anyway, the time blending from one month to the next month, for one day the next day, I think I’ve seen it referred to as, it’s blurs day today. It’s exhausting, and it’s not just happening to you, it’s happening to your team members, it’s happening in to your leadership, so what do we do with this new version of normal that we have in our lives?
So of insane completely. Conferences have changed completely. Communication has changed. So what does it mean when every single conversation you have this plan, there’s not serendipitous conversations, you have to schedule conversation, you have to text someone and say, Hey, is it okay if I video call you right now, or you have to have every hour plan with the video calls, there’s no care, defines hallway meetings, there’s no break between meetings, there’s no build-in breaks, you can sit at your desk for hours at a time and forget that you need to eat and go to the bathroom, it’s a little too easy to work too much, so I turning to colleagues or quick chat in that actually takes effort, and before times on your team had built up all of these productive habits in that productive work space, whether it was open office floor plan that you love… You found a way to make it work. Now you have to find ways to make it work in a completely different way, you’re home with all your distractions in your Peacock, and you need to basically reboot your own leadership style at this time, if you haven’t already… For me, part of my leadership style is being an empathetic person, I kind of… And an extrovert, I feed off of what I feel from other people, and I can literally feel emotions rolling off of other people, how do I do that when I’m stuck at home and I don’t have anybody to interact with on a one-to-one basis?
It’s important to remember as you’re changing what you’re doing to help your team, you have to start with yourself… Leadership have to start with thinking about yourself.
And I wanna take a moment to mention that. That the tips that I’m gonna share today, I know that I’m coming from a position of privilege. I’m presenting Latina who is gainfully employed at a giant tech company, this is from my perspective, so understand that if what works for me doesn’t work for you, maybe you and I can chat after this and talk about ways to adjust.
So let’s talk about things that you have to take care of in yourself first, you have to establish your boundaries, you have to establish your balance in a… You’re… Oh, shoot. Five minutes down.
Okay, I’ll talk faster as we… It may seem whether you’re player, coach a servant leader, any of those great phrases we like to use, your team might find you to be intimidating, so you have to model the behavior you want to see from them. Are you working over time? Are you working on weekends, you have to advocate for yourself to your leadership, so make it clear if you’re starting sometimes a difference because you have family members, you have to take care of… Make it clear, you have to make sure that your leadership itself is being mindful and compassion, and you have to advocate for yourself up and for your team up and… So I came up with a lot of iterations to give you some tips on would I have changed and what has worked for me, community clarity, compassion, connection and a liberation… This is my doc Porter on March 20th, he passed away. That was right smack in the middle of the pandemic.
So I… And it was hard and understanding that the people’s lives are going on around them when you can’t see them is important.
One of the biggest struggles people have found this is from the state of remote 2020 report, that communication collaboration is a huge pain point for people, so what do we do? We have to assume that all communication that’s not on-video is a synchronous, don’t expect immediate replies, don’t feel obliged to reply immediately and include your team in the process of building new processes.
So that they’re on board with it.
Do you have a digital com on board? Do you have the right remote collaboration tools, if not, how are you working with your management to get hold of the right collaboration tools?
You can use Trello Maro, envision. What are you using? Are there processes for… Have you documented them having tangible action items is really important, and communicating your thoughts by a chat and by email over communicating your thoughts is important, some up conversations with your team members in email, you might not be on the same page, they might have had distractions on the conversation, if you’re having one-on-ones, sum it up with action at a sum it up with findings and things that you want them to take care, and things that you’re going to be taking care of, make sure your team knows your schedule and can have them communicate to you their schedule and make sure your leadership knows the flexibility that you’re giving your team so that they don’t feel like there’s not enough going on within your team. The other thing we have to do is Risley prioritize.
This is called an Eisenhower matrix. It’s really cute in how our matrix, but it’s the urgent, non-urgent, important, not important matrix of what you work on and what you don’t work on, of the things that psychologists tell us is that establishing a clear vision of goals helps people make sense of chaos, so us as is and how Matrix for your team as a leader, it’s your duty to set priority for your team members, so go over what is important in urgent because that’s what they should be working on right now. What is important and not urgent, that’s what they need to schedule for later… What is urgent, but not important?
Maybe they need to delegate that to somebody else, and what is not important, not urgent, that just needs to be deleted, you need to communicate to the people out who are asking you do these non-urgent, not-important things that this is gonna have to wait.
And what’s over to the other set?
Compassion, yes, this is what every single stock photo of… Compassion looks like I couldn’t find anything better. I’m sorry, if you think back to Donato and Star Trek, in every episode she’s in, when she’s confronting somebody with a problem, she starts by asking permission. May I help you with that?
Do you mind talking about how you’re doing when you have your one-on-ones with your team, you have to be compassionate, but ask them permission to… If they’re not ready to let you in, if they’re in their home environment, if they have an anxiety disorder, if they’re an extrovert who is just dying from lack of attention and interaction, or an introvert who’s really actually enjoying what they’re doing and actually getting energy from being able to heads down, focus so much, just regardless of the situation, the person, make sure your team members feel Chaco logically and physically safe. Check in on them, make sure they’re safe.Gonna throw out mass Hierarchy of Needs, because that’s part of the bingo card for design conferences, that sense of safety is what they need above all to be able to function at any other level, even if you’re not naturally empathetic, you can learn to be… You can practice your active listening, you can listen to understand, don’t avoid what’s going on when you talk to them and your one-on-ones, either open our clothes with, how are you doing? Can I ask how you’re doing? And I ask how this thing in your life is, but how’s your back deck going, how’s your knitting going? Talk about their hobbies and things that are happening outside of their lives, outside of their work lives that don’t dwell on it and be keenly aware of your own state of mind when you’re talking to them, if you are in a stressed or anxious state of mind, maybe reschedule things, maybe change up your schedule, talk to your leadership about taking some time off, be aware of how your state of mind affects other people and be sensitive in your conversations with them.
The last thing about compassion, I wanna say is, when you have somebody under-performing, you need behind not nice, the difference between being kind and being nice is when you are being kind, you point out the spinach in their teeth and help them get rid of it when you’re being nice, you completely ignore it, and then everybody else sees it, it’s horrible. If somebody is under-performing, you need to talk to them about it in the moment, as soon as you can and help them understand how to get over it. Do you have an employee assistance program that they can talk to if they’re having… If they’re having struggles emotionally or medically or physically, ignoring those warning signs from employees can set them up for burnout or worse, so make sure that you’re talking to them about that, and then connection is my last… See, that’s where… So you are a couple of hats, I live at employee a boss hat. When you’re talking with your employees in one-on-one settings or in team builder settings, try to make sure you take off your leader hat at some point, as Lena true. mentioned earlier in the day, you have to be your authentic self and leadership, being a authentic self means being open and being vulnerable, and that’s not easy to do, always as a leader, you are setting the tone for your team, and that’s a lot of pressure. There’s plenty of advice out there to role model the Comm and the courage that people are saying You should… People who are optimistic, whether trials better… If you put, if you can’t do that, if you’re not able to do that, if you can’t, hang on to that com optimism, you shouldn’t have to hide what you feel, but you, you need to understand how what you feel and how you display it shows up to your team, you can start by sharing a struggles with your team, you understand they need to understand the the same struggles affecting them are affecting you and that you’re human and that you understand what they’re feeling, but if you feel like you should avoid talking to people that day, make sure you do take some time off, take some time to take care of yourself in one-on-ones, make you have agendas, that’s the biggest fail point I’ve seen in one-on-ones, it’s not having an agenda to talk about, and they just kind of meander. Put on your agenda either at the beginning, right, and time to talk and connect about something personal.
For me, I work with a really amazing designer, Christine, and she and I both play Animal Crossing, so we take the first five or last five minutes of our one on the chat about Animal Crossing, building connections is something crosses also done. She was inspired by someone else at the company building connections, and she decided to start reaching out to individuals among the team and say, Hey, give me writing prompt and I’ll draw something for you, so she’s getting to know individuals throughout our larger team and get… Connecting with them by doing this, and that inspired me, so you can learn from examples from your direct reports as well, if they do something that inspires you to connect more with other people… That’s a good thing to look for. And I’ll leave you with the Happy vision of the Trumps, with the dinosaurs learning in a classroom and the clix Guilin at sunset that Christine drew for people who she’s met across the team.
Alright, I’m pretty sure I went over time.
Thank you everybody.