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Skills you need in a crisis

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in Best-Practices Leadership,Leaders & Managers,Leadership Skills

The three leadership skills required now are agility, communication and decisiveness, says Clarke Murphy, who heads the CEO search practice for Russell Reynolds.

1. Agility: “A business plan of six months ago—or even six days ago—doesn’t matter anymore,” Murphy says. Smart leaders say, “We’re in an incredible crisis, so we’re going to take action as fast as we can to position ourselves differently and come out on top,” Murphy says.

2. Communication: It’s not just about the messages going out to analysts and shareholders. “It’s also about communicating internally,” he says. “Where are we going? Will we survive? How can we take advantage of this?”

3. Decisiveness: Even in capital-intensive manufacturing businesses that have much longer times to develop the product, you see people who must be quick with decisions—despite uncertainty about liquidity and which partners are sound.

— Adapted from “Skills leaders need in a crisis,” Erin White, The Wall Street Journal.

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