Do you ever find yourself wondering when things will return to normal? Recently, I was at an event having a discussion with a group of senior leaders. During our conversation, one leader remarked how tired they were. In a moment of exasperation, the leader said they just wanted to get back to normal operations.

As we continue to transition out of the pandemic, these conversations frequently occur, which leads me to one of my favorite leaders, Craig Groeschel. Recently, on his leadership podcast, he addressed the topic of leading out of a crisis.

I know what you’re thinking; if you’re such a great leader Kim, why are you listening to Craig Groeschel’s leadership podcast? Although I’m an educational leader, leadership consultant, and Maxwell Leadership certified team member, I’m still on my leadership journey. You can’t give what you don’t have, so I continue to follow thought leaders as part of my leadership development.

“The illiterate of the 21st century will not be those who cannot read and write, but those who cannot learn, unlearn and relearn.”

– Alvin Toffler

Anyway, in his podcast, Craig Groeschel pointed out three things that, until recently, he did not realize about the crisis caused by the pandemic.

  1. The toll that crisis leadership took on himself
  2. The toll that crisis leadership took on his leaders
  3. We’ve entered an utterly uncharted season of leadership

As I listened to his podcast, I thought, “this is so true.” As leaders, we have been so focused on leading through the pandemic we have not realized how we and others have become depleted. I’ve had numerous conversations with other leaders and team members about them being tired all the time, even when they have been getting adequate rest. As Craig says, “we need to rest and refill.”

Craig Groeschel’s point about entering an uncharted season of leadership is also valid. Although there have been numerous world crises in our lifetime, this is the first that has touched every society throughout the world. The pandemic directly or indirectly impacted everyone.

I often hear people talking about getting back to the way things used to be or “normal.” Although most leaders have realized things aren’t going back to “the way we were,” Craig points out that many of us are still leading the “way we were” before the pandemic. He further points out that our way of work has changed, and we’re not leading after a crisis; we are leading out of a crisis.

“If you lead now like you led before, you will not succeed in your leadership.”

– Craig Groeschel

Craig believes that “leading out of a crisis may be more complicated than leading in one.” Recognizing this, he has identified “6 Keys to Leading Out of Crisis.” They are:

  1. Question everything. Be willing to change anything.
  2. Listen more. Talk less.
  3. Help your hurting team members heal.
  4. Lead like you’re onboarding your entire team.
  5. Give your team quick wins.
  6. Communicate twice as much as feels natural to you, then double it.

Craig Groeschel’s “6 Keys to Leading out of Crisis” are very well thought out because it’s only a matter of time before your organization goes through another crisis.

“It’s not a question of if you will find yourself in a crisis, it’s a question of when, and how you will lead.”

– John C. Maxwell

The last two years have been challenging for leaders. The pandemic has changed the way we work; therefore, we as leaders must redefine normal. We need to ask ourselves, how can I help my team transition to a new normal as I lead them out of a crisis?

I want to encourage you to listen to parts one and two of the “Leading Out of Crisis” episodes. Just Google “Craig Groeschel Leadership Podcast,” and you will find them in the search results. I found them quite enlightening, and I believe you will also.


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  • Thoughtful post, Kim. And very true. There is no going “back” to normal. Normal is what it is as we move through life.

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    About the author

    Hi, I'm Kim, Your Leadership Guide. I equip aspiring leaders to lead with confidence, emerging leaders to expand their influence, and accomplished leaders to achieve significance!