Jerry Swon has a longstanding interest in volunteering and community involvement.

Month: May 2023

How to Lead Your Community Well When Under Pressure

Leading a community during challenging times requires unique skills and strategies. Influential leaders must rise to the occasion when faced with pressure and uncertainty, providing their community guidance, support, and stability. Consider these strategies for leading your community well under pressure, drawing from proven techniques to help you navigate crises and emerge stronger as a leader.

Maintain Clear Communication

Clear and transparent communication is vital during times of pressure. Keep your community informed about the situation, challenges, and steps being taken to address them. Provide regular updates, share relevant information, and address concerns promptly. By being open and accessible, you foster trust and keep your community engaged and informed.

Display Calm and Resilience

As a leader, remaining calm and composed during challenging times is essential. Projecting a sense of calmness and resilience reassures your community and instills confidence. Manage your emotions effectively, demonstrating that you can handle pressure and adversity while focusing on the community’s overall well-being.

Lead by Example

During times of pressure, leaders must lead by example. Set the tone for your community by displaying the behaviors and attitudes you expect from others. Show empathy, compassion, and understanding, and encourage collaboration and unity. When your community sees you modeling the values and behaviors you promote, they are more likely to follow suit.

Foster Collaboration and Support

Create an environment that encourages collaboration and support among community members. Facilitate open communication channels and provide platforms for people to share ideas, concerns, and solutions. Encourage teamwork, empathy, and mutual support, as these elements can help your community navigate challenges together, fostering a sense of unity and resilience.

Adapt and Innovate

Under pressure, leaders must be adaptable and willing to embrace change. Encourage your community to think creatively and explore innovative solutions to the challenges. Foster a continuous learning and improvement culture where new ideas are encouraged and tested. By fostering adaptability and innovation, you position your community to overcome obstacles and emerge stronger.

Prioritize Self-Care

Leading under pressure can be demanding, both physically and emotionally. To effectively lead your community, prioritize self-care. Take care of your own well-being by managing stress, maintaining a healthy work-life balance, and seeking support when needed. By looking after yourself, you ensure that you can continue to lead with clarity, focus, and resilience.


Leading a community during challenging times requires unique skills and strategies. Remember, effective leadership is about providing solutions and supporting and empowering your community members. Implementing these strategies fosters unity, resilience, and growth, even in the most challenging circumstances.

How to Have Authentic Conversations With People in Your Community

One effective way of building community relationships is by engaging in authentic conversations beyond small talk and surface-level interactions. Authentic discussions can help you establish trust, empathy, and understanding with those around you, creating more meaningful connections and opportunities.

To have authentic conversations with people in your community, here are some tips:

Listen actively: When conversing with someone, give them your full attention. Avoid distractions, focus on what the other person is saying, and try comprehending their perspective. Active listening involves hearing the words being spoken and understanding the underlying emotions and intentions behind them.

Ask open-ended questions: Open-ended questions are an excellent way to encourage others to share more about themselves. They can also help you gain more insight and understanding into their thoughts and feelings. Instead of asking close-ended questions, ask questions that invite the other person to elaborate.  

Share your own experiences: When appropriate, share your experiences and perspectives. This can help build trust and create a more equal exchange of information. Don’t dominate the conversation or make it all about you. The goal is to create a balanced dialogue that allows both parties to share and learn from each other.

Be honest and vulnerable: Authentic conversations require a level of vulnerability. Share thoughts and feelings, and be open to hearing others’ perspectives. This can help create a safe space for deeper conversations to take place. However, it’s essential to be mindful of the other person’s comfort level and not push them to share more than they’re comfortable with.

Avoid judgment: Avoid approaching conversations with an open mind, avoiding making assumptions or judgments about others. Everyone has unique experiences and perspectives; respecting and understanding these differences is essential. Be curious and ask questions to understand the other person’s perspective.

Practice active empathy: Active empathy involves putting yourself in the other person’s shoes and understanding their perspective. This can help you connect with them more profoundly and build empathy, which is critical for building meaningful relationships in personal and professional settings.

Respect boundaries: It’s crucial to respect others’ boundaries and not pressure them to share more than they’re comfortable with. If someone wants to avoid discussing a specific topic, don’t force them. Creating a safe and respectful environment is critical to fostering authentic conversations.

Engaging in authentic conversations with people in your community can help you build stronger relationships and create more meaningful connections. By actively listening, asking open-ended questions, sharing your experiences, being honest and vulnerable, avoiding judgment, practicing active empathy, and respecting boundaries, you can create a safe and respectful environment for deeper conversations. Authentic conversations require time and effort, but they’re worth it.


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