10 May Create Change – Act Fearless!
By Dana Gillis, Executive Coach
Ahhhhhhhhh! I love that new office smell! During a recent move into new office space, my mind turned to thoughts of change. Our change in location made me think about the impact of all kinds of change upon leaders and organizations.
When an organization is successful, change is often the farthest thing from the mind of organizational leadership. Why take a chance and “mess with success?” On the other hand, fear of change is a driving force behind a deteriorating enterprise, because something has to be done differently to stave off the possibility of failure. There are two types of leaders who guide the way in which an organization chooses to proceed: 1) those who open their arms widely to embrace change and 2) those who would avoid change for fear of making what might prove to be a fatal decision.
Decisions! Decisions! What is one to do? The choices for a leader facing the inevitability of change are relatively simple: embrace it, avoid it, manage it, or create it.
Most leaders are adept at embracing change. Change is the realm in which a successful leader works on a daily basis. The manager who readily adapts to the challenges of an ever-changing work environment is usually placed in a position of leadership by virtue of her/his proven track record of embracing and managing within the milieu of change. What about the other end of the spectrum?
Resistance to change is part of the natural continuum for an historically successful institution. The lack of willingness to change can have dire consequences, however, when a leader or an organization is resistant to change and falls behind the evolving landscape in which the organization competes. (Have you tried to find a printed copy of a locally produced newspaper, lately?!)
Manage and Create Change
So, what’s the best choice for a leader faced with the inevitability of change? In a world that is constantly moving forward, the choice is obvious the Fearless Leader. These leaders realize that to thrive, their organizations have to embrace and create change before external market conditions force change upon them. This is what it means to Act Fearless. How do you create positive change and what is the advantage of a proactive approach to change? To act fearlessly in changing times, leaders need to keep their heads up, scanning the horizon for what is coming next.Then, bring the power of their organization together and create an environment for success.
“Fearless Leaders know they have to embrace and create change before external market conditions force it upon them.”
As a leader, the first thing to remember is that you don’t have to shoulder the burden of change implementation by yourself. Today’s competitive environment requires the best minds to identify new opportunities in the moment. That best mind might not necessarily be seated in the boss’ chair. Reaching out to your organizational partners will not only expand the number of brains available to tackle the challenges of the moment. At the same time, when you ask for the input and assistance of your team, it makes team members feel like valued partners of the enterprise. Organizational success comes more readily to the leader who has the ability to leverage intelligence resources within their respective organizations to help manage, drive, and implement change.
Create Change and Act Fearless
Summing up, the choice for the Fearless Leader is to create change and Act Fearless. Change represents momentum. Although the initial loss of efficiency and competence may be unsettling, the gain in corporate capacity and ability will better position your organization as a competitive force to be reckoned with.
Act Fearless – embrace and create change!