The covid-19 crisis started spreading again after the first wave and now declared as the second wave of covid-19. The first wave of the covid-19 was very crucial for the companies because of the lockdown and the panic among the people. It was difficult for leaders to manage their people and organization at times like this.


India faced a similar situation in 2008 recession however, significant differences between the current situation and the previous recession of 2008. In the current situation, it is increasingly important for leaders to activate both channels appropriately—to provide focus on tackling the threats faced in the moment, while also seeking out opportunities that will fuel the future.


Leaders calm Survive and activate Thrive 


During this crisis employees are feeling anxious and fearful about job security, their health, their loved ones, and the future in general. As individual Survive Channels are overheated, the Thrive Channel becomes overwhelmed. Leaders must find various ways to calm workforce Survive responses, in addition to activating Thrive.


Calming Survive begins with taking actions to address the controllable threats and providing confidence in the organization’s ability to successfully do so. Given the nature of the real and perceived threats employees are facing, leaders need to do more than take the necessary actions. 


Leaders often believe that communicating incomplete or uncertain information will cause confusion and anxiety, but an absence of communication creates even greater unease.

Calming Survive requires transparently articulating what is known, what is uncertain, and what possible outcomes are being considered. Given that the current crisis extends beyond our professional lives, business leaders may need to provide communication that goes beyond the business context, even if they are not comfortable doing so. 


Leaders can help by clarifying perceived threats from real ones, reducing ambiguity through clear communication, and inspiring confidence through transparent, inclusive decision-making.


With a Survive Channel that is sufficiently calmed, leaders can then work to activate Thrive by focusing on opportunities and creating ways for employees to contribute ideas, innovate, and take actions towards an exciting vision for the future. 


Thrive and corresponding positive emotions have been shown to enhance collaboration and innovation, behaviors that are necessary to effectively play offense. As many organizations work to calm Survive, very few are effectively pivoting to activating Thrive through a compelling picture of the future. 

Source: Chief executive by Gaurav Gupta, John Kottler, and Vanessa Akhtar

Are you also facing difficulties in leading in the time of crises?

Dr. Shital Badshah works as Leadership Coach. He can be reached at or +91 94284 19021. Give us your details, we will get in touch with you soon.

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