Webinar recap: WTF is going on?!?

In this webinar, I had the pleasure of sitting down with Justin Angsuwat, Chief People Officer at Blackbird, and former CPO at Thumbtack, to talk through the crazy conditions that HR, execs and founders are dealing with right now. Our objective was to provide our audience with very practical ways for handling these unprecedented times of change and stress and making sure their teams feel supported and motivated. We had a great conversation with a ton of input and questions from our audience.

Below, you can watch the webinar recording on-demand and read our recap of the topics we covered. We’ve also condensed the practical tips shared into this handy downloadable so you can keep it as an easy reference guide.


WTF is going on?

Justin kicked us off with his unique perspective on the unprecedented challenges we’re seeing, informed by his extensive experience working across the US and Australia:

  • We’ve been collectively navigating unprecedented challenges as a society and as organizations – a global pandemic, mini-recession in the US, bull market run, mental health challenges, war, social movements, globalization of workforces, and inflation.
  • We’re heading into more uncertainty with the downturn of public markets, lay-offs and redundancies, and a likely recession.
  • Business leaders are shifting from a period focused on hiring and growth to one of stability and maximizing current talent.
  • In the face of uncertainty, employees are turning to their employers for stability and support in ways they have not done previously.

What’s going on within companies?

Justin and I talked through the competing priorities founders, HR and exec teams are managing right now:

  • Boards are asking to see investments in upskilling talent and ensuring that there is a strong culture for hiring, retention, and performance. They are also encouraging cost-saving and cost-cutting measures.
  • Employees are asking for (and demanding) more – Gen Z is brutally honest and expects leadership to act. Millennial managers are confused and burnt out, adjusting to remote and hybrid work, and dealing with kids and aging parents.
  • People leaders are navigating some of the craziest HR/People issues without precedent to turn to.

What are people managers experiencing?

We reflected on the challenges that people managers are facing right now – a group that is critical to a company’s ability to retain its top talent, communicate key company updates (unfortunately this also includes sharing bad news), and maintain productivity, even when morale might be low. Some of these challenges include:

  • The same challenges they typically have under normal conditions, but that are exacerbated by stress and change – staying attuned to motivations and adequately investing in self-care, building trust and connection, sharing expectations and feedback, making decisions, and motivating teams.
    Being thrust into managing distributed teams, crossing cultures and time zones, without the right systems or skills.
  • Being asked to respond to complex issues with little experience or training – mental health issues, social movements, and lay-offs.

Practical tips: how to engage and empower your managers

We spent the bulk of the session going through practical tips that founders, HR teams and other execs can roll out immediately to empower their managers to support their respective teams. These covered:

  • Communication techniques and channels
  • Acknowledgement
  • Expectation setting

To get the full list of learnings you can deploy today, get your free copy of the webinar follow-up eBook: 4 practical ways HR & People leaders can support teams in tough times.

A big thank you to Justin for his time and incredible insights, and to everyone who joined us!

Want to learn more about how The Mintable can help you give your managers the tools, training, and community they deserve? Book time to talk to our team today.