Episode 68 – Lockdown Leadership | Clarity

Prefer to read the transcript? Click here.

Across this 5-part podcast series, I chat with Becky Hammond from Isogo Strong and unpack some common leadership themes that we have seen stand out during this crisis. As we’ve coached and worked with leaders over the past several months, themes have emerged where the best leaders are thriving and implementing changes to successfully take their team and organisation forward. These themes include Grace & Kindness, Communication, Individualization, Clarity, and Selfcare.

In this episode, we focus on CLARITY. The need for clear conversations to reduce anxiety, stress and clear those murky waters that can often come in times of unpredictability.
Prioritising clarity brings calmness, expectations, more security and safety about what’s ahead. It allows the opportunity for honesty from both a leadership and a team perspective and reduces the element of surprise.

Key highlights include:

  • By communicating clearly and with clarity when it’s business-as-usual, it enhances the team’s communication, productivity and responsiveness when things get murky
  • Sometimes clarity needs to come from the bottom up, not just the top down.
  • Teams who focus on clarity are often happier and more engaged
  • Even if you have no answers to a certain event/situation/project, be open about that. Otherwise people start to create assumptions and stories as to what might happen.

Actionable steps to take from this episode:

  • Where can you provide more clarity in ONE space?
  • Challenge: at your next team meeting, ask everyone where they need more clarity right now.
  • Review: Are the cycle of your meetings matching the rhythms of your work?
  • Use a traffic light system for flagging what tasks need more clarity – green is good to go, amber/yellow needs more clarity, and red is something that won’t progress without further conversation.
These conversations with Becky are always valuable, she brings a wealth of knowledge and inspiration from the other side of the world. I hope you follow along with this series here on the podcast as we get into the themes that have shined through the best leaders in this time of lockdown.
If you gained inspiration from this episode then you will love our program, Leaders Who Give a Damn, where we take these concepts even further.
In the next conversation of this series, we will be delving into Self Care and how it is vital for you and your team.

Listen in your favourite app


Becky Hammond  00:01

Well, good morning, Murray Guest. I was gonna say just your first name, but I decided to say both. So good morning. I’m so excited that we’re having this conversation today.


Murray Guest  00:11

Well, good afternoon to you. And you know, we are talking about clarity in this conversation and you’re bringing some clarity right into it from the start around, you know, names and time of the day. How have you been?


Becky Hammond  00:30

Doing good, you know, I mean, it is, it’s a crazy time still, like, I didn’t think that if we were in July, we would still be saying that. And, and we are, we’re saying that there is still a lot of uncertainty. And I know even in my personal life, we’ve had just kind of some close calls and just some things where we felt like, wow, one moment could change a lot of things. And I think that kind of all speaks into what we’re talking about today. And why this topic, this theme of clarity has come up, as one of the key elements of leaders who are doing it well, are really doing well, in this season of lockdown, of uncertainty. You know, I mean, a lot of organizations are not in their same, you know, we’re all staying at home, and we’re all working from home. But there’s been a lot of changes. And it continues to be uncertain in this time. And so this, this theme of clarity has been one that the leaders who are doing it well are just, they are starting to have a clear voice and a clear perspective. And they are communicating that to their team. So, Murray, this is a topic that is near and dear to your heart, and that you have seen leaders all around you do well, you’ve also been able to encourage others that aren’t seeing the importance of it to say, okay, well what happens if you practice clarity, practice, practice communicating more clearly, and painting pictures of expectations. So let’s dive into this topic a little bit more. Why don’t you, first if you would, just define clarity for us? What do you mean when you say that the best leaders are those who can create clarity for their team?


Murray Guest  02:19

So I totally agree with everything you just said then, Becky, around this time right now in July 2020. And what it’s like and, you know, things changing so rapidly. And who would have thought that after what we’ve been through the last few months, we’d be still in this situation right now. Before I share my perspectives, I just hope everyone that’s listening to us is happy, healthy and well, because it is something on the minds of every conversation I’m having with people and of leaders. And I think links back to some of our early conversations about our care for our team as well. I think about, you know when you see on Instagram those beautiful pictures of nature, of this still water and you see the pebbles underneath the water, or you might see the reflection or you see these beautiful shots where it shows underneath the water and then above the water. And it’s just, you look at that and you feel calm, you feel peace. And you think wow, I just would love to be there. I’d love to swim in there, I’d love to just, you know, experience that. It’s not the photos on Instagram of a murky dam, where you go, Hey, I can’t wait to put my foot in that one. And I follow nature, which is just a very simple, simple account on Instagram but shares those type of photos all the time. And honestly, I look at those and I think that’s just beautiful. And it brings this calmness to my sense of being when I look at those and I love it. The murkiness, the lack of clarity, imagine going for a walk if we were walking in the in the forest, and it’s a hot day, we’re with our children. And there’s a lake and we say, let’s go for a swim and we walk up to the lake and it’s crystal clear. We go Okay, we can see the hazards. We can see maybe there’s a log that’s washed down. We can see how deep it is, if there’s any weeds or anything like that. And we say yeah, let’s go for a swim. If it’s all murky, kids, let’s just back up and you know, play on the sand and let’s lie on the pebbles. We won’t go in the water. So clarity in nature gives us this calm. The beauty. We understand what’s in front of us.


Becky Hammond  04:39

Security in some ways, right?


Murray Guest  04:41

Yeah. A sense of knowing, you know, what’s ahead. Yeah. And as leaders, we need to provide that clarity. We need to lead clarity and those clearing conversations. And this time, right now, as we’re talking about lessons in leadership in lockdown. Unfortunately, we’ve just got all these bits that are adding to the murkiness that we need to bring to the surface and bring that clarity.


Becky Hammond  05:11

Kind of filter out, filter out the things that are creating the murkiness, that are creating the lack of clarity.


Murray Guest  05:17

Yeah, 100%. And we were talking before this conversation about assumptions and about just going through in our leadership roles or in our life about, we’re just assuming this or just assuming that or maybe people understand that, or, you know, I’ve told them once, they get it. But having those conversations, when we bring clarity to the conversation, just think for a moment about how that feels. And not just the calmness, but it reduces the anxiety, reduces the stress, it gives us clear direction moving forward, aligns with my what’s my purpose, what are my  priorities? And also, where can I provide value right now? And people need that. Because right now we’ve got all these other bits around us that we don’t know what’s happening. There’s change from, you know, organizations, from policies, from communities, to governments, and all that’s happening. So I need clarity, I need clarity right now. So I can feel at my best, and I can, I can deliver on what I need to do.


Becky Hammond  06:24

Yeah, what a powerful position if, as a leader, you could actually impact your team’s psyche, in a really uncertain time, by just creating clarity even in just in one space, right? Like, we’re still gonna have lack of clarity or those murky waters in some of our other areas. But what if in one space, as a leader, you can create a sense of ahh for them in one very important part of their life where they actually spend, you know, most of their time, if you’re working full time.


Murray Guest  06:56

Yeah. And I, I think about some of the work I’ve done over the years in partnering with organizations that work in high risk areas. So for example, power generation, where, you know, I want to talk about power, talk about electricity. And what I’ve heard and what I’ve found out and talking to the leaders in those emergency situations where we’ve got to be really switched on. What happens is people talk more, they communicate more frequently, they reduce the assumptions, the murkiness more, they’re communicating frequently. And clearly. And what happens is productivity, safety, performance improves in those situations, when things are at their most dangerous, their normal day to day work. Because they’re bringing that clarity in day to day, and this has been repeated many, many times. The challenge for them is how do we take that mindset and that driving and leading of clarity, into our normal business as usual.


Becky Hammond  08:01

Right, when there’s not a sense of urgency or emergency at which maybe even happened at the beginning of kind of lockdown time, right? Like, people were like having more regular conversations and things like that, because it felt like there was a lot of adrenaline up. But then what happens once the adrenaline wears off, and now you are kind of still in an uncertain environment. But you’re back to your day to day. And as leader, you know, where can we find that oomph and that drive to create clarity? So what have you seen, what what stories can you tell us about, you know, the leaders that you’ve seen that really have done this well, or, you know, the impact that it has had, either way, when they’ve done it well, or when they haven’t done it well?


Murray Guest  08:46

So over the past few months, I’ve been talking to lots of leaders. And thankfully, there’s some really good examples where the leaders have done this really well. And I think it’s not just about the team that you lead. But it could be those people you work with side by side, your peers, but also leading clarity upwards sometimes as well. Quick example around a leader that I know, he needed to really get clear with his team about what are the priorities right now? And you might think, is that such a big thing? Well, what was happening with this team, and with a lot of teams right now, is people are working from home, some are working back in the office. There’s a transition going on right now, like some in different areas right now. And the workload isn’t just the same in some areas, it’s increasing because they’ve got projects and they’ve got business as usual type tasks to do as well. And people are starting to feel overwhelmed, they’re starting to feel like, Well, how do I deliver this? How do I still actually maybe do a bit of home schooling, pick my kids up, in the office some days and for the most I’m at home, and it was the team going to that leader and saying, hang on, I actually don’t know what’s the biggest priority right now. And then the conversation generated and evolved into, you know what, that chunk of work, that project, let’s leave that for a few months. And they are like, Really? I didn’t even know we could do that. That was that, let’s leave that but this right here, this other project we need to deliver on, that needs to be done right now, you know, and the tasks for that need to be done right now. But leave this other bit and leave this other bit. And I think what the best leaders are doing is actually just bringing the unknown to the surface, they’re actually making it very overt. They’re having that conversation more frequently to make sure, Hey, I’m not telling you how to do your job. But what I’m going to do is make sure you’re clear on what our priorities are.


Becky Hammond  10:55

Don’t you think that sometimes leaders think that this is kind of like a boring conversation to have? Like, they might say, well, I mean, like, you talked about assumptions, but even more than assumptions, just like well, I mean, it’s just not that interesting, right? Like, I was talking to a leader today who said that she had a meeting with her team. They’ve been hit very hard by the impact of COVID-19. And they had to do layoffs, and they’ve had to restructure. And she decided to have a meeting with everybody on her team. There’s like 40 people there. And there’s, I think, four or five different departments, and everybody was on a zoom, live. And she went through four or five different org charts. And she explained who was in what role and what they were going to be doing. And as she got off, she was just like, oh, my goodness, poke my eyes out. I’m sure everyone was so bored. You know, like, this is not a riveting conversation. But what she found was that people were text messaging or Facebook messaging or emailing her saying, that was the best meeting that we could have ever had in this moment. Thank you so much for going through that. And what they were saying was, thank you for providing clarity when we were feeling stressed. You know, I mean, when people are getting laid off, of course, you’re stressed, it’s unclear, then not only is it, man, am I keeping my job, but what are other people doing? And who do I go to now for, you know, to work on this project? Or who am I supposed to collaborate with on this? And what she did by having a boring – what she thought was a boring – meeting, she made a peace in her team that she probably couldn’t have achieved in any other way, except for going through a boring org chart.


Murray Guest  12:55

Yeah, and I think that’s a great example, where, through that process, I can imagine the flow of the conversation of, Hey, I just want to confirm this bit of information. And I just want to check on what’s that person’s role now, and now I understand it. So it’s again, you know, getting everyone on the same page, removing the assumptions. This is the org chart going forward right now. And this is how we are going to work together. I mean, that is showing, I think, the vehicle that the discussion, the org chart, helps create greater clarity, not just on the org chart, but I’m sure other things will have fallen out from that as well.


Becky Hammond  13:32

Yeah, yeah, definitely following up with a Q&A and people feel because the leader is being forthright, they feel more secure, that they can ask questions, because they have a construct for asking them now, it’s not just kind of out of left field, and you know that the leader has given the impression that she is open for their questions and for their concerns and cares about their everyday job.


Murray Guest  14:00

This leads me to a point, Becky, I think is really important for us to consider that sometimes we need to provide clarity about where we can’t provide clarity. And in that conversation this may have come up. I’m, of course, not too sure. But what this looks like sometimes is people thinking, Oh, we won’t talk about that because we don’t know. What happens is everyone else is creating their own story, their own meaning of what they think is going on right now. And as a leader, you might need to say, actually what I would encourage people to say is, right now, all we know is this, and that’s all we do know. And this other part, you know, about an org chart or a change or what’s happening from projects in the future, whatever it might be, we don’t know what’s happening there. And so therefore can’t provide ant more clarity but I can provide you clarity on this. Again, reduces that stress and the assumptions and the stories and potentially gossip as well.


Becky Hammond  15:00

Yeah, when you and I talked back a while ago, for my strengths in crisis, it feels like years ago, it might have only been a few months ago. You mentioned a leader who you had worked with who said that it was communicated this idea of creating clarity, even when it wasn’t going to be popular, even when the decisions that were being made, like weren’t going to be giving the fuzzy feeling. Can you share that story again, about what she said?


Murray Guest  15:38

Yeah, I’ve got a few stories. I think it was this one.


Becky Hammond  15:43

I’ll let you know if it sounds familiar.


Murray Guest  15:46

Well, one that this does remind me of many, many years ago, when I was working for an organization and redundancies were happening. And I remember talking to the CEO, and we were walking to one of those town hall meetings where all the staff were going to be there. And I remember I just happened to be walking next to the CEO. And I said – and I was quite, quite young and junior in that day – and I said something like, Oh, are you going to talk about redundancies? You know, people are really worried and maybe you are going to talk about something like that? And she paused, walking, again, great leadership, didn’t just keep walking, paused, looked at me and she said, Murray, of course I am. People want to know what’s going on. I’m going to talk about it and answer the questions as best I can right now.


Becky Hammond  16:34

Yeah, and that’s a scary thing to do sometimes.


Murray Guest  16:38

Yeah, yeah. And I’ve seen the opposite to that happen. You know, redundancies, obviously, are an emotional process for a lot of people, for lots of reasons. But when you can provide that clarity, again, it makes it easier, you know, it links back to us talking about leading with grace and kindness, and how important that is. The other story that I want to share also is about leading clarity upwards as well. And a leader I was talking to earlier this week, she shared some frustrations about, how I am being communicated from my leader one on one, I feel like I’m not getting the full picture. Whereas my peer, who is having one on ones and another peer having one on ones. We all feel a bit misaligned in our approach and how we’re leading our teams. And they said, Look, what do we what do we do about this? And so they actually went to their manager collectively and said, hang on, we don’t think this process is working. We feel like we’re missing some gaps. And that there’s a lack of alignment and clarity. Can we change this process and meet collectively, more often, to reduce that? And they were actually a little bit concerned because they didn’t know how this manager would respond. And he was very much like, Yeah, sure. Okay, let’s do this. How does it work? I’m glad you came to me. Again, some assumptions there, but so powerful, because I’ve spoken to them again since and they’ve said, it’s been so good. It’s just helped us get clear for not just us, but for when we are leading our teams as well.


Becky Hammond  18:17

Wow. I love that. I love that as a leader, you can seek the clarity. Like so when you start to see things are murky, you don’t just have to sit there and trudge through the murky water, you can also start to pursue ways of cleaning that up. And I mean, it could feel a little risky, like you said, like they said, I don’t know how he’s gonna take this. But in the end, you know, hopefully you’re approaching a leader who says, Well, if we can create more clarity, then in the end, it’s going to be better for all of us. 


Murray Guest  18:53

I was just going to say sometimes when we do jump in that clear water, we can stir it up a little bit. And it can get a little murky. And sometimes to create clarity, it’s going to get a little bit, I don’t know I’m going back to the metaphor here, a little bit uncomfortable, a little bit murky.


Becky Hammond  19:13

Your shoes are gonna get wet.


Murray Guest  19:14

Yeah, maybe maybe a little cold, you know, a little bit, a little bit uncomfortable. That’s what it’s about. But through that, you’re going to get the the clarity that you need for you, your team. And it’s just so needed right now, Becky.


Becky Hammond  19:29

Yeah. So what does it look like? So you’re talking about some really great stories, what are some of like the actions and behaviors? So as a leader, I’m listening right now, I’m like, okay, those are some good stories, but like, how do I actually go about doing that? Like, what are some actual behaviors that you are observing that are repeatable by other people who might be listening today?


Murray Guest  19:55

So I think about from this conversation with clarity, there’s a couple of angles that a leader can go down. One is their own self clarity, where they need that. And to take the time out to reflect and think what is causing me stress right now? Where am I lacking clarity? And write it down, write down the list and actually do the work, and say, Okay, now who do I need to talk to to increase that clarity for each one of these things, and then plan and actually have that conversation and explain your intent. I need to know clarity on this project, I need to know clarity around what’s happening. But actually, then make sure you have the conversations. So that reduces your own sense of stress and worry, it helps you get focused. And then the second thing is to actually have that conversation with your team. I invite all leaders to be thinking about, sorry, not even thinking, let’s take that back. At their next meeting, at their next meeting, to actually say to the team, where do you need more clarity right now? What do you need clarity on?


Becky Hammond  21:13

So inviting them to help you point out the murky parts?


Murray Guest  21:20

Yeah, point out the murky parts. And then make sure you listen, and then create space to have that conversation. And you may not have all the answers, and that’s okay, that’s 100% okay. But create the space to have the conversation and then generate some actions where you need to follow up and get the answers or give them the understanding that you don’t have the answer right now, to reduce that. For some teams, you might need to give them some time to reflect on that and then come back to that. And, and others that actually might generate, which I think happens quite a lot, is the clarity that team members are going to provide to each other. So it’s not all about you as the leader saying, hey, I need to tell you this, this and this, but it’s actually going to increase the understanding between team members as well. The third one, I think that is really important is actually talk to your team about how often you are talking in your meetings. Is the cycle of your meetings matching the rhythm of your work? 


Becky Hammond  22:29

What does that mean? 


Murray Guest  22:30

So we think about how our work flows in our teams, sometimes we are getting through work at a pace where we need to talk more frequently to match the information flow that’s coming in and the decisions we need to make. So for example, a team might be meeting once a month or something like that, yet they need to have updates more frequently and get that alignment throughout the month. So another great example of this in the recent months, a leader I know was meeting with his team once a week. And it was a pretty good meeting. But with working from home and all of the changes to the arrangements, they now have that that huddle meeting every morning on zoom, where they check in on what are our priorities, how are we going, what’s working, and the team are definitely saying we want this to continue when we go back into the office, because that’s happening every day and how valuable it is in bringing that clarity. I think we talked about this one in communication when we spoke about that, because it is such an important thing right now in having those conversations more frequently to match the needs and the rhythm of the work, of the team.


Becky Hammond  23:50

What if a leader is feeling like man, I just don’t have time. I don’t have time for like more meetings. So what have the best been doing that have helped them with that? Because it’s not that the best leaders aren’t busy, they are. Everyone’s busy, right?


Murray Guest  24:06

Well, I’d ask the question of leaders that say that what’s the most valuable thing that you should be doing with your time? And what’s the time cost to have the conversation now? And what’s that impact if you don’t have it now, and how you’re actually repeating a conversation model times down the track? A leader I was talking to yesterday, she said to me, she said, Murray, I actually went back to my team after our last session where we talked about clarity. So it’s awesome when leaders do the work. And she said, I was thinking about this conversation, and she said, I realized when I was delegating I would normally just tell them, Hey, can you do this bit of work? And leave it. And she said, I paused and I actually said I need it by this date. I need it to look like this and this is the priority. And she said she was really clear, she said it only took me an extra couple of minutes. And she said, I even felt a bit uncomfortable. But the person was like, thank you so much. And she said, previously, there would have been five or six, you know, backwards and forwards, trying to sort the work out. So to answer your question, Becky, I think, yeah, it’s the role of the leader to actually bring that clarity and have those conversations sooner. Because when you let that go, you know, when you let it fester, when you let the water go murky, you’ll pay the price.


Becky Hammond  25:33

Yeah, yeah. So it’s like incremental meetings are going to, in the end, be more efficient than one grand meeting or going down the wrong path, because it was fogged over right, to mix our metaphors a little bit. But so that nothing’s a surprise, right, especially in performance, in evaluation, right? Like, I mean, this is some of the basics of managing of like, well, if you don’t tell them what you’re expecting, then it’s not fair to hold them accountable to something that they didn’t know was the bar. And so in some ways you can’t afford not to, even though it feels like maybe it’s because you’re busy. I mean, it feels so stressful.


Murray Guest  26:21

I think it’s a great link to It’s The Manager, which is the Gallup book that Jim Harter and Jim Clifton released last year. But we talk about past work and future work. And past work was an annual review and future work is an ongoing conversation. That’s what we’re talking about here. It’s not, hey, how you going, once a year. It’s an ongoing conversation about what’s working and what’s not, and how can you acknowledge the good and improve in some areas. And again, that’s that mindset of the ongoing conversation as a leader to provide that clarity in other areas as well.


Becky Hammond  27:11

Yeah. So what’s the impact? And we’ve been talking about it kind of incrementally as we’ve gone along here. What have you found, the leaders who are creating the most clarity in their teams, what is happening to their team? Why should leaders be like, Oh, yeah, I want to create clarity.


Murray Guest  27:31

Honestly, they are happier. They are thriving, they are more productive. They feel less stress. And they, I think there’s less resentment. Because I think sometimes we can get some of those negative emotions of, I’m not hearing and I’m creating a story why I don’t know and why it’s murky. I wish my leader would tell me, but I’m too busy… and all that stuff. So all that’s going. So we’ve got more happiness, more engagement, more productivity, and less stress.


Becky Hammond  28:13

Right. As an institution, my experience says that we do not take into account the emotional stress and the impact that that has as much as we could or should. That it’s like, as if you’re carrying an extra weight on your back, you know, you’re like a, you’re a marathoner, and every day, you’re starting at zero, and you’re trying to get to the end. And that emotional stress of not having clarity is like carrying an extra weight. So that as you go, you’re not going to be as productive, you’re not going to be as happy doing it. Because you have an extra weight on your back, you’re going to be thinking about things that, you know, maybe you shouldn’t, you shouldn’t spend your time spinning your wheels about. And, but when you can, as a leader, release that from them, it’s like you’re taking the burden off their back, and they can feel lighter. And more, you know, like you said, happier and less distracted by the emotional weight of a stress of the lack of clarity.


Murray Guest  29:22

Yeah, I think to add to that, there’s less conscious attention. There’s less thinking. There’s less worry about, Oh I’m thinking about all these elements right now, I can actually focus on what I need to do right now. And I’m thinking about other analogies right now that are just so relevant to this conversation. You think about when you go on a holiday and you plan it. Where are we going? What does it look like? Where are we staying? And some people might prefer to just go, I’m heading out and that’s fine. Generally, though, I would say everyone’s got some level of plan as big or small as it is. And when we have that structure, and that clarity that’s going to help us get there. I think even with the people that like the smallest amount of planning, that enables them to know where I’ve got some clarity, and when I can, you know, go with the flow. It’s when we just don’t know at all, again, anxious, what am I doing? What does it look like? I have no idea. I was in America years ago, and you and I talking about driving in America, it’s hard enough driving on the other side of the car, let me tell you that.


Becky Hammond  30:38

I have had that experience. Yes.


Murray Guest  30:41

But then too, so there’s one bit of clarity, how do I drive from the other side of the car? And then to actually, you know, drive across is it the i45? Whatever it is.. 


Becky Hammond  30:52

You’ve been to Omaha too many times.


Murray Guest  30:57

I’m trying to think which it was, you know, so many big roads. But then to actually say, I drove from Los Angeles out to Las Vegas, and to get out of LA, and where am I going? I needed to know, where am I going? Which corner do I take? Which street sign? How do I do that? Because I remember that knot in my stomach with a, a car full of family and luggage and trying to get across five lanes of traffic. Right? Where am I going? How am I going to get there? So I can make the best, safest decisions to reduce that stress. It’s exactly what we’re talking about right now, as leaders we need to provide that.


Becky Hammond  31:43

Yeah, I love that. That’s a that’s a really tangible metaphor that we can kind of think about where are we going and how are we going to get there. And so we don’t have to be stressed when driving, we can just chat with our family instead of feeling stressed and overwhelmed. So what, if there are leaders listening right now that are like, okay, I’ll try it. Or, oh, I see how I could add a little bit more clarity, or let’s just see what the impact would be. What do you think that, what do you suggest that leaders would do right now that they can say, Okay, this is a tangible thing that I’m going to do next week, or this week with my team?


Murray Guest  32:23

Yeah, so I think the first thing would be to have that conversation with the team. To actually say, right, we’ve got our standard team meeting, but let’s bring to the topic at the start of the meeting this concept of clarity. And you can even use the traffic light analogy. So right now, where have we got green lights, so we can just go straight ahead. Where do you feel like you’ve got some amber lights where you don’t quite understand, you know, I need a bit of information. And, and then we have our red lights, where have I got red lights right now where I actually don’t understand, I need clarity. Really simple. And then just go through that with the team. Again, bringing out the clarity, bring it out. And some of that you’ll find will be, as I said earlier from the leader within the team, or maybe from customers, internal customers, internal suppliers, where then it’s going to drive some real tangible steps to say, Okay, I’m going to go find that out, I’m going to find out what we need to know.


Becky Hammond  33:36

And not be afraid to say I don’t know, let’s let’s think about that.


Murray Guest  33:40

Yeah, let’s loop back on that. Let’s come back in our next meeting. You don’t need to solve everything in that first discussion. Yeah, let’s go and find out and we’ll come back. That’s what I say people should do first. And I think, of course, team meetings are a great places that but again, like we said earlier, think about what it means for you one on one for your own, you know, manager that you report to or leader you report to and how you can get more clarity for yourself as well. The other thing I would say Becky is try it out at home.


Becky Hammond  34:17

Hmm that seems like a whole other ballgame.


Murray Guest  34:25

It’s something which I put my hand up as a husband and father where I’ve missed the clarity bus. Let’s just say. And haven’t provided that. And the stressful conversations I’ve had. So what I’d say is yeah, have the conversation at home if you have a partner and about where are we missing that right now? And, and how can we improve that clarity and, and just see how that can reduce maybe some stress and improve that well being.


Becky Hammond  35:00

Yeah, and kind of circling all back around the uncertainty. If we can create certainty in some of the most important areas of our lives, then even though we still live in the midst of uncertainty, we’re going to have less stress and experience more well being in some of those key areas in our lives. So cool. Love that. Love that last little tip. I think I’m, I think you were trying to coach me on that one. So I will take that one. I’ll take that one home. Conversations like we’ve been having today are ones that we also have in our Leaders Who Give a Damn program. And, you know, what’s the connection? What do you think the connection to the Leaders Who Give a Damn program and clarity really is?


Murray Guest  35:44

Ah, so definitely I would say knowing your people is one of our modules, we talk about leaders who give a damn around knowing their needs and knowing them. Definitely also prioritizing conversations. That’s a key part that we talk about in the Leaders Who Give a Damn program. And as you said earlier, Becky, not just waiting to have the conversation. But yeah, let’s talk about that reduction of, of anxiousness or murkiness and bring the clarity there. And even the last one, tackling busyness. You mentioned leaders are busy, have always got a lot on their plate. But I would say this is a key part in our leadership roles, and making this a priority. And it will then give you that reduction in your busyness because I think, I’d like to say a lot of leaders will find it will prevent some of that re-communication and re-work and going over things that’s happening right now.


Becky Hammond  36:49

Yeah, yes, I love it. That is totally true. And we, in the program, in addition to tips and stories, provide some clear action that leaders can take. The idea is that we want this to be useful to you, very consumable. And so if leadership is something that you care about, if you care about caring for your people, then definitely check out Leaders Who Give a Damn. We have one more podcast in this series about lockdown leadership. So next week, we are going to be talking about self care, well being and just understanding the importance of taking care of yourself and the impact that is having on some of the best leaders that we have the pleasure and honor to work with during this time. So thank you, Murray for sharing your insight on clarity and your stories. And it’s just been a pleasure to chat as always.


Murray Guest  37:46

Right back at you Becky, always a pleasure chatting with you. And thank you for sharing your insights and stories from across the pond.


Becky Hammond  37:55

Murky or clear?


Murray Guest  37:57

Clear. A clear pond. Yes. See you next week.


Becky Hammond  38:00

All right. See you now. Bye


Share This