Covid - Leadership During a Crisis

After a full year in office, the Prime Minster delivered his party conference speech this week in very different circumstances and surroundings to what he may have expected 12 months ago. Despite donating a significant part of his speech to the opportunities for developing wind-turbine generated electricity in the UK, strengthening the NHS and overseeing an economic recovery were inevitable elements of Boris’s rhetoric.

Those elements continue to be either side of the tightrope upon which the Government seems to be perpetually balancing. Do we risk the economy by restricting people’s freedoms, or risk the NHS by returning them?

It’s said that it is in times of crisis when great leaders emerge. But is this something that can be said of Boris as we struggle on in the face of the coronavirus crisis?

When we discuss leadership during our training courses, one of the expressions we like to share is the 3 Cs of Leadership:

  • Clarity
  • Consistency
  • Consequences

If we look back at some great leaders of the past, it’s easy to apply these characteristics. We won’t give you examples here but try it for yourself.

Did the great leader you are thinking of display clarity? Were they clear in their mission, message or belief? Was there any ambiguity or was it made blatantly plain what they were about and what they wanted to achieve.

Did they exhibit consistency? Did they stick to unswervingly and with singlemindedness to their mission or message?

And did this consistency and clarity make it easy to understand and visualise the consequences? ie what could or would be achieved. Equally were the consequences of not following the vision and values made clear?

If we look at the performance and behaviour of the Prime Minister and his Government during the Covid crisis, are we able to apply the 3 Cs? It’s certainly debateable. There have been ongoing questions cast over testing, track & trace and quarantine. And the Dominic Cummins lockdown-flouting story continues to find its way into the headlines. At times, senior ministers failed to communicate the same message reliably.

We don’t have a political axe to grind at HR Champions but we do think that Leadership should be analysed and examined. It’s from real life examples that we demonstrate and extract what does and what doesn’t contribute to great leadership.

Incidentally, have you applied the 3 Cs test to your own leadership behaviours? If it’s something you want to examine in greater detail, we have Leadership Development training courses available at all levels. Why not talk to us about improving the leadership capabilities of you and your team. Call us on 01452 331331 or e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.