How employees of all generations can lead during crisis


Remember that it is hard for everyone, both leaders of the company and employees, during this time. We can all lead by acknowledging the emotions of the team and acknowledging that we can all be leaders even if we are not part of the leadership team.

According to SHRM, Generation Z employees are finding remote work more challenging overall – more than one-third said it has hurt their work/life balance and think their employer needs to provide them with better tools for working remotely.

It is time for us to do our part and lead by looking out for one another. Brought to you from Justin Patton, here are five things we can each do this week.


  1. Check in with each other. Say “hi” and “how are you,” and ask, “how is your family?” Because we have moved our office desks to our kitchen tables, our work/life balance and social interactions are hurting.
  2. Empower co-workers with the tools to be successful. Technology needs, access to people and educational opportunities are more important than ever. Now more than ever it is also important to show empathy with each other and have some grace for fellow team members.
  3. Ask, how do we best work together? How often do we need to check in? This might be different for each of us. One co-worker might be fine with a monthly check-in, whereas another employee might need that social interaction daily. Feeling supported by leadership and fellow co-workers can be done in very different ways, like time off for mental health days, more conversations and supplying technology.
  4. Let others know you are thinking of them. Check in, show up and make sure everything is okay. At this point, we all know of a co-worker that has either had to quarantine because of COVID or has had to take on home schooling or daycare responsibilities and are expected to be online working. Reach out to those team members and say “hey, I was thinking about you this week.” We do not always need something in return.
  5. Stay positive. Let others know we will get through this together by being positive team players. There are no promises on how difficult this time will be or how long we will remain in a pandemic, but communicating often will show that you truly are a committed team member.


As employees, we need to communicate and stay in touch with our co-workers. When was the last time you went out of your way to check in with a fellow employee without needing something in return?

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