Image for post
Image for post

I don’t think I’ve ever been so ready for a year to end. How about you?

What a challenging, bizarre, and painful time it has been in our country and our world. And, as 2020 wraps up, it’s easy to just say “good riddance” and hope for brighter days ahead.

However, as difficult as this year has been for us collectively, and for many of us personally, it’s important for us to acknowledge all that’s happened, as well as our growth and the fact that we made it through.

On a recent episode of my podcast, I reflect on this unprecedented year and share a powerful process and set of questions we can ask ourselves to bring real closure and completion to 2020. …


Image for post
Image for post

This has been an election like we’ve never seen here in the United States, in the midst of a year like we’ve never experienced.

I’m grateful that President-Elect Joe Biden is calling for cooperation, unity, and healing. However, what has become abundantly clear over the course of the past few days, weeks, and months, is that we’re a deeply divided nation.

And while we already knew this going into the election, my hope and prayer is that things can change in this regard as we move forward. …


Image for post
Image for post

Recently I’ve found myself getting into some infuriating debates on social media (mostly with fellow white folks) about racism, law enforcement, the current state of our country, and, specifically, the #BlackLivesMatter movement.

I’m usually pretty good at not engaging with people and in discussions that don’t seem respectful or productive. I’m all up for healthy debate, for being challenged, and for trying to influence people. I’m also passionate about finding common ground and working to see things from different perspectives. …


Image for post
Image for post

There is a weariness that a lot of us are experiencing these days with everything going on in the United States and the world the past few weeks and months.

As I talked about on a recent podcast episode, there are some specific things I think we can focus on right now to navigate these challenging times and hang in there.

1. Pace Yourself. This is one that I struggle with and have been challenged by recently, but it’s essential. Even if we have tons of passion, lots to do, and feel called to act, serve, respond, speak up, or engage, it’s important for us to take breaks, care for ourselves, and remember that it’s usually a marathon not a sprint — which is so true right now. …


Image for post
Image for post

This has been one of the most intense periods I’ve ever experienced in our country and our world in my lifetime (I was born in 1974).

I’ve been feeling angry, sad, scared, helpless, shocked, and much more. The emotional roller coaster that most of us have been on the past few months with the pandemic seems to have gone into overdrive with the tragic, senseless, and brutal murder of George Floyd.

In the midst of the protests, reactions, outrage, curfews, news coverage, and more — I’ve been hearing a lot of people ask the question, “What can I do?”

I think the answer to this question does depend a bit on who we are, where we are, our level of privilege and power in our society, our background and identity, our experience, and more. …


Image for post
Image for post

As challenging and vulnerable as receiving feedback can be, giving it can also be quite difficult. And for us to be successful leaders, teammates, parents, friends, spouses, and human beings, it’s important to give feedback effectively to those around us.

According to a study conducted by psychologist Tessa West of NYU for the NeuroLeadership Institute, we have an automatic fight-or-flight threat response in our nervous system when we’re receiving feedback, which exists just as significantly when we’re giving it. So, it’s essential to have some compassion for ourselves when we’re in situations where we have to give feedback to others. …


Image for post
Image for post

Although there are many aspects of this pandemic that are bringing us closer together and breaking down barriers between people, our country and our world continue to be incredibly divided along political and ideological lines, which has significantly negative consequences for each of us and all of us. As I write about in my new book, We’re All in This Together, while it isn’t easy or often encouraged in a real healthy and productive way, our ability to connect with people who see things differently than we do, politically and otherwise, is so important, especially right now.

I was on a plane a few years ago flying from Fort Lauderdale to New York. I’d spoken at two events in south Florida, was flying up to New York for some meetings, then on to Boston for another event, and then back to Florida for my final event before heading home. It was a crazy but exciting week. I was in full-on work/travel mode, which means I had tunnel vision — focused just on getting to where I needed to get to, taking care of myself physically so I’d be ready to go when it was time to speak, and getting as much work done as possible while on my flights and in my hotel rooms. …


Image for post
Image for post

We all have privilege. Some of us, like me as a straight, white, affluent, American man, have more than others. However, for a number of reasons, many of us have a hard time acknowledging and owning our privilege. It has become almost a slur, or even an outright attack to be called “privileged.” In our current social and political climate, there has been a lot of important discussion about white privilege and male privilege specifically.

A simple Google search of the word privilege comes back with this definition: “A special right, advantage, or immunity granted or available only to a particular person or group.” …


Image for post
Image for post

Given all that is going on these days and the intense level of uncertainty in our world, many people are understandably feeling scared, angry, sad, and more. One of the best things we can do to address this and support everyone around us, including ourselves, is to lead with compassion.

As I talk about in my new book, We’re All in This Together, I’ve heard compassion described as “empathy in action.” While empathy is about understanding and feeling the emotions of others, compassion is about wanting to contribute to their happiness and well-being. Compassion, therefore, is more proactive, which means we can make a habit of it. Teams that intentionally and habitually show compassion to one another are more connected and successful. …


Image for post
Image for post

When I wrote my latest book, We’re All in This Together: Creating a Team Culture of High Performance, Trust, and Belonging, I had no idea it would come out in the midst of a global pandemic which has had a significant impact on every aspect of work and life in our world. However, now more than ever, for our teams to navigate these challenging times successfully, we must come together, connect authentically, and lean on each other, which is what my new book and my work are all about.

For the past 20 years, I’ve been studying, researching, speaking, and writing about the qualities of great teams. I’ve been honored to partner with organizations like Google, Wells Fargo, Microsoft, Schwab, eBay, Genentech, Gap, the NBA, the Oakland A’s, and so many others — helping them enhance the culture and performance of their teams. …

About

Mike Robbins

Mike Robbins is the author of five books including his latest, We’re All in This Together, which released April 2020. He’s an expert in teamwork and leadership.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store