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It’s a pretty different world we’re all navigating now than it was a year ago. The adjustment phase is largely over and we’re choosing to focus with gratitude on what we can learn from these extraordinary times. The lessons thus far are incredibly valuable, and they’re validated by what we see in the experiences and data of our customers.

Great leaders have the resilience to adapt to new realities and understand the strategic imperatives they introduce. In that spirit, here are four actions you can take to align your leadership in 2021 with what your employees, customers and communities need.

Build and preserve the right culture


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I spend my days (and to be honest, many of my nights) thinking about what the teams that RallyBright supports need in order to perform at their best. What have I noticed most, these past few months, from my front-line view of how hundreds of teams are doing? What does it reveal about what leaders can do to lead better in 2021?

One of the strongest trends I’ve seen is that teams with a strong sense of purpose and clear values are not only surviving, but thriving. We often say that “Direction” — or having a shared vision, purpose and…


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At RallyBright we’re focused on helping managers become better leaders and building better teams. A big part of this is sharing our findings related to what drives team performance and how to improve team relationships and values.

Below you’ll find a running repository of the infographics we’re creating to share our insights around building high performance teams:

Team Measurement:

The 5 Building Blocks of Resilient Teams

For any team to succeed, it needs a strong foundation of resilience. The good news is that the building blocks of team resilience are learnable and measurable.


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As we continue to make our way through this prolonged pandemic and significant cultural shifts, many of us are experiencing an unprecedented disruption in our professional and personal lives. One ability we have in our resilience toolkit as humans is our capacity for empathy — a psychological identification with the thoughts, feelings and attitudes of others. If you lead a team, ensuring you’re leading with empathy is one of the most important investments you can make in your organization right now.

Empathy, along with the other four components of emotional intelligence, has gotten a lot of attention over the months…


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Some companies and groups of workers are now heading back to the office, while others continue to work from home. Whether you’re among the first group or the latter — or somewhere in between — it’s clear that this new hybrid workplace will be with us for the foreseeable future.

In this environment, leaders and teams will benefit from leaning on resilience principles more than ever. This is because scattered teams, high stress and a challenging market climate for the vast majority of businesses mean team resilience in the COVID-era workplace is a necessity. …


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Most of us have now been under local lockdown orders for several weeks or more. We’ve rolled with the first waves of scary COVID-19 news and, for those who are office workers and new to remote work, we’re adjusting to the new normal of working from home. The future is uncertain to some degree. But we do know that sooner or later the social distancing guidelines will relax. And then we’ll start climbing out of the economic hole that opened beneath our feet in March.

As we get back to work, what can we expect for the rest of 2020…


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For the foreseeable future, it’s likely that many of us will be cutting out nonessential travel as we’re increasingly encouraged to help “flatten the curve” of new COVID-19 cases. We’re already seeing trade shows, conferences and other large offsite business gatherings canceled or postponed. We don’t know what’s going to happen, but it seems likely that there will be continued disruption to the economy and business as usual for a while.

If you lead a team, what does this mean for you and your team?

For onsite and remote teams alike, offsite gatherings are important times for team members to…


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Like everything else in our fast-moving, tech-enabled world, the theory and practice of leadership is constantly evolving. Last year we saw shifts including deeper investments in human capital, greater focus on employee coaching, and the rise of millennial managers, among others. This year, many of those trends continue while new ones have also broken onto the team leadership scene.

What’s shaping this changing landscape? Demographics is a big one, with millennials asserting their needs and preferences as the largest generation in the current workforce. Millennials want workplaces that are innovative and collaborative, and that provide thoughtful paths for professional development…


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The clock is winding down on 2019, and things are as hectic as they are every year at this time. Like a lot of CEOs and other managers, I’m trying to lead a company to a strong finish (our best ever). For me that means guiding and supporting my internal team, keeping our company partnerships strong, serving current customers while bringing on new ones, and continuing to develop our platform.

Despite a long to-do list, the end of the year is a natural time for reflection. This year more than any other perhaps, I’ve been thinking about teamwork. After all…


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If you think a culture of gratitude at work is just a touchy-feely nice-to-have, you may want to think again. Several recent studies on the benefits of gratitude suggest that not only is gratitude great for our health, sleep and stress reduction; but it also pays off at work, resulting in greater job satisfaction, higher productivity and employee retention, and stronger teams.

One explanation of these benefits is that gratitude fuels resilience — that secret sauce of long-term outperformance. It does this by shifting our focus away from whatever challenge we’re currently facing (e.g. a rushed deadline) and towards what…

RallyBright - John Estafanous

@RallyBright, founder & ceo — helping business leaders and coaches build better teams — reformed agency exec.

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