Recent months have been challenging for many business leaders. From navigating shutdowns and business slowdowns caused by the Covid-19 pandemic to dealing with supply chain issues and inflation to finding needed help in a tight labor market, leaders have been confronted with multiple challenges at once. Still, for most business leaders, these recent crises aren’t the first time they’ve dealt with a difficult situation.

In the moment, a crisis can feel overwhelming or discouraging. But once it’s past, wise leaders will often have learned a valuable lesson from the experience — knowledge they can lean on when the next difficult time occurs. Here, 13 members of Business Journals Leadership Trust reflect on the challenging times they’ve experienced and share the important lessons they’ve carried forward.

11. Break big problems down.

Break the solutions or tasks into digestible chunks. Crises and challenges can be overwhelming and can “freeze” the problem-solving portion of your brain. When you break things down, it allows mini solutions and successes as well as continual progression to overcome the situation in its entirety. – Aviva Ajmera, SoLVE KC