Have you ever had a team member in the middle of personal drama or crisis and you aren’t sure what to do?

Recently I had a client who had set up some big goals she was working to achieve with-in the month. Then a family crisis happened that turned her life upside down…click here if you would like to listen to this podcast, or you can read on. 🙂

As I thought about how to handle this with my client, I realized I had 2 choices:

  1. Assume that this meant she would no longer be going after her goals.
  2. Stop the assumptions in my head that she would not be able to focus on her goals  because of the turmoil in her personal life.

I chose the second option and realized that I needed to approach her with curiosity and purposeful questions.  In doing this, it allowed my client to pause and think about how her situation affected the goals she had set for herself.   And here is the really awesome thing…she realized that it actually drove her MORE. Her purpose now was stronger than ever as she realized she needed the extra money that would come with achieving those goals.

Here are a few steps you can use next time your team member has a personal issue come up…

  1. Swap Sympathy to Empathy.  Empathize and acknowledge their situation. This is probably a no brainer, but an important part to be a good human.
  2. Be curious with a purpose:  ask good questions to help them figure out how they want to move forward with their business during this time.
  3. Don’t let your assumptions fill in the gaps.  You will be able to serve them best by allowing them to figure out what THEY need to do…. Which may not be what YOU would need to do.
  4. Seek to serve and stay neutral.  Don’t allow your personal emotions and feelings about the situation take over.  

So let’s walk through an example of what this could sound like if your builder comes to you with a personal issue…  

“Wow. thanks for sharing what you’re going through. I am so sorry that you are facing that. I’ll be rooting for you and I hope it all works out. I’m curious what you are thinking your plan is regarding the goals we set up because I want to make sure to help you best with wherever you are at?”

This type of question will give them a chance to pause the drama and think about where they need to focus. If they say they aren’t sure, just give them a safe space to think about it. Ask them, “Well if you could think of what your ideal plan would be for the things that you shared with me that you want to achieve- what would that look like?”

This will allow them to start to think through what feels right during this time.  One of the most important things we can do for people is give them space and time to make decisions that feel the best for them.  You may be surprised at how often it will actually help people to continue to focus on their business goals. These are something they can control and it also keeps a sense of normalcy and accomplishment.  

I hope this was helpful for you today!