Leadership Adapting in the Era of COVID-19

After completing my first week interning with Three Ventures, I have been exposed to the great leadership that stems from the Principal, William Beatson.  Working for a Business Development company, I was unsure what kinds of opportunities Three Ventures would have in the midst of a pandemic.  This week, I have observed the leadership of William Beatson through personal exchanges and conference calls, and have realized how his leadership greatly aligns with Fiedler’s Contingency Theory.  The Contingency Theory describes how the leader should fit their leadership style to the situation, not the other way around.  The leader must be flexible since each situation is different, which is exactly what I have observed with William Beatson.  The Contingency Theory recognizes how leadership depends on the combination of the situation and the leader.  Since the situation is taking place during COVID-19, the leadership must be altered since the situation was so drastically.  

I have had many phone calls with William Beatson this week, in which he explained to me how his business model is evolving with the times.  He is unable to focus on tasks he used to, such as placement of products in stores, marketing photoshoots, etc.  William Beatson has recognized how the circumstances of his job have changed, so his leadership style needed to follow suit.  Now, his focus has shifted to multiple clients in the restaurant arena, who are looking to take advantage of this time and expand their business.  For clients who were set to be releasing products in stores, he has been able to help guide them towards a smooth online release and have the clients photograph marketing advertisements in their homes.  

The operation of the business has slowed in some areas, but picked up in others.  This week I have created multiple proposals under William Beatson’s guidance for clients who now have the time to expand their business.  On conference calls, he has proposed new marketing and business tactics, demonstrating his ability to expand his leadership style and adapt with the times.  His new leadership focus has shifted amidst coronavirus, and he has shared with me, in addition to my witnessing firsthand, some of these examples I discussed.  This week has allowed me to observe how William Beatson is adapting his leadership to fit the situation, which aligns greatly with the Contingency Theory.