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Stress, pressure, and change are funny things as they can impact the way we usually respond and act. We can learn more about people based on what decisions they make and do not make when things are not “normal”, and we’ve been “swimming” in that recently.

To give you an example. In the lead up to a friend’s recent wedding, it was interesting to observe how some people who were close and supporting the event changed their behaviour. A long term and good friend of the groom who normally was unreliable, to the point that if he said he was “just around the corner” you could go out and do the shopping, come back and you’d still be waiting for him, totally reversed this behaviour and became a role model of dependability.

Surprisingly, during the lead up to the wedding he was in constant contact, incredibly punctual, connected and dedicated to the groom’s every need. On the other side, a bridesmaid who traveled with her family from interstate and kept referring to the time surrounding the wedding as “her family holiday”. She was difficult to get in touch with and unavailable for many special moments with the rest of the bridal party.

Ironically, this same person in the past had always been there for the bride being consistently connected and reliable. Of course, there were people who stayed true to what was known and expected but many people behaved in an unexpected manner.

Now I’m not thinking that many of you have got married over the past 12 weeks but I’m imagining you may have found some individuals who have surprised you both positively and negatively.

So, are you now thinking?

  • Wow, was that a one off, I didn’t expect to see that?
  • Is that who they really are?
  • How could I have miss read them?
  • How do I reset my expectations?
  • How do I lead and engage with them now?

If you’re asking yourself any of those questions you’re certainly not alone. One thing I can say with certainty is “we are who we are”. We don’t behave in a way that is not naturally part of us.

There are two reasons for unexpected behaviour from your team.

  1. Their internal values have been triggered and they are making core, moral based decisions from their personal “hard wiring” which usually remains managed and hidden.
  2. They acted in an unexpected but predicted manner because they were not able to manage their stress and pressure levels.

The good news is what you have experienced you’re likely to see again, and those behaviours are part of the individual’s personality and are measurable.

Before you re-calibrate for the new normal, have no doubt about who you have beside you and how best to manage them.

If you have any doubts, drop me an email I have three simple questions and one idea which can provide clarity and certainty.