Business always includes an element of unpredictability, and agility and flexibility are enduring requirements for successful leadership. But more than ever before we are operating in uncharted waters, and building long-term success in business and leadership means not just implementing new methods but creating a whole new mindset.
When change comes this hard and fast, those of us who practice leadership need to move beyond working to complete the tasks before us and achieve the goals we’ve set. We need to be especially mindful of developing and nurturing sustainable leadership practices.
The form of those practices can vary widely. In my work as a leadership coach, these are some of the points I’ve been making to my clients who are navigating new realities:
Work to foster deeper and more enduring collaboration. In a world that’s daily growing more challenging, we need to rethink the ways we collaborate. New problems require new ideas, and often those ideas come from outside the usual channels. People working outside their area see things differently and can contribute a fresh vision that complements that of insiders. The key to bringing together a team with diverse backgrounds is to get them interacting around a central motivating factor—an approach that requires them to focus on the core nature of the business itself as well as the issue at hand. When you can create new partnerships and deeper bonds between people who have never worked together before, you maximize the collective intelligence of your team. The results? Innovation, success and longevity.
Be relentlessly innovative. In the past, we may not have known exactly what the future would hold, but we knew—or thought we knew—its general shape. These days, when most of us look ahead all we can see is uncertainty. Business has become not only more complicated but also more complex. Complicated things are often still linear, with patterns you can see and control. In a complicated environment, efficiency is your friend. But complexity is different beast that above all requires creativity and innovation.
Embrace adaptability. A leader who is agile and flexible is comfortable with being uncomfortable. They are resilient in face of adversity, and they aren’t fazed by disruption. I know many leaders who have given in to leading from fear. They’re hunkered down waiting for things to go back to normal. But as a coach, my job is to help my clients remember that what they do today is creating their future. Instead of hiding or playing wait-and-see, I help them learn to honor these moments and use them to drive change and innovation.
In business and leadership as in all of life, the future may not be something we can predict, but it will always be something we can invent.
Lead from within: To be the best leader you can be today, do the things that your future business and people will thank you for.
#1 N A T I O N A L B E S T S E L L E R
The Leadership Gap
What Gets Between You and Your Greatness
After decades of coaching powerful executives around the world, Lolly Daskal has observed that leaders rise to their positions relying on a specific set of values and traits. But in time, every executive reaches a point when their performance suffers and failure persists. Very few understand why or how to prevent it.
Additional Reading you might enjoy:
- 12 Successful Leadership Principles That Never Grow Old
- A Leadership Manifesto: A Guide To Greatness
- How to Succeed as A New Leader
- 12 of The Most Common Lies Leaders Tell Themselves
- 4 Proven Reasons Why Intuitive Leaders Make Great Leaders
- The One Quality Every Leader Needs To Succeed
- The Deception Trap of Leadership
Of Lolly’s many awards and accolades, Lolly was designated a Top-50 Leadership and Management Expert by Inc. magazine. Huffington Post honored Lolly with the title of The Most Inspiring Woman in the World. Her writing has appeared in HBR, Inc.com, Fast Company (Ask The Expert), Huffington Post, and Psychology Today, and others. Her newest book, The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness has become a national bestseller.