This Week's Herman Trend Alert

Leadership in Normal 2.0

  The Herman Trend Alert

September 11, 2001

Special Herman Trend Alert: Response to Terrorist Attack

We are all affected by the tragic acts of September 11. In response to requests for guidance from some of our consulting clients, we have prepared this brief special advisory. What we suggest is by no means a complete list of all you might do, but we recommend that you consider doing at least what we have suggested below.

Employers Must Respond Positively to Terrorist Tragedy

As all American institutions will be affected by the terrorist tragedy inflicted upon the country, so will the nation's workplaces. The response or lack thereof by the country's employers can make a profound difference in the lives of their workers. Most important is the need for the leaders to show high levels of sensitivity.

Here are some suggestions about how to handle this challenging situation:

  1. Gather employees together to demonstrate strength and solidarity. Have top executives, those respected for their vision and clear thinking, speak about the future and the need to unite to endure.
  2. Ask for volunteers to spearhead an effort to encourage blood donation and/or raise money for Red Cross or Salvation Army to help them provided needed services. Give employees time off with pay to give blood.
  3. If any employees are activated into the National Guard or military reserves provide full support for the workers and their families.
  4. Give people an opportunity to vent their feelings. At difficult times like these, workers need times to express what they are feeling.
  5. When tragedy hits, we all need time to grieve. Consider bringing in mental health professionals to provide advice and counsel.

As soon as possible, return to normalcy-or something close to it. Returning to familiar routines, established procedures, existing plans will help people adjust. They'll be more comfortable, and they'll have constructive things to do. While we must grieve for our losses and honor those who are directly engaged in response to the terrorism, there are compelling reasons to keep the wheels of commerce moving.

Now is the time to build the bonds of community-being and feeling together, but also doing things together that keep our economy strong. Most people will be searching for some way they can do something in response to the events of September 11, 2001. Hastening a return to normalcy to demonstrate our resilience will make a positive difference.

>>>Let us know if we can be of any assistance to you.

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