“When we are no longer able to change a situation…we are challenged to change ourselves.” – Viktor Frankl
We talk with our clients a lot about the importance of being agile as an organization. As markets change, as customers change, as people change, as technology changes, our businesses have to be able to adapt. The leaders we work with take pride in being able to handle all that change – usually.
Part of being agile as an organization is having a leader who is agile themselves. In other words, it’s not enough to make change in how our businesses function. We have to be able to make change in ourselves.
That’s easier said than done. Most people claim to be flexible, but my experience is that very few people actually are. Our habits our comfortable, we like being good at the things we’re good at, the unknown frightens us, so we just keep marching to the same drummer. Unfortunately, as time goes by we sometimes need to change drummers.
Before you send unpleasant emails, please note that I’m not talking about compromising things like integrity or honesty or work ethic or any of those kinds of things. I’m talking about flexibility in how you relate to people, where you spend your time, how & what you communicate, etc. Do you really think that the habits you’ve been in since 2004 are going to be relevant in 2020? Do you really think that the skills you’ve had for twenty years will be all you need five years from now? If you do, you’ve been ignoring what kind of world we’re living in.
Take some time right now to think about where you need to change, whether it be in terms of leadership or technical skill or focus or anything else. What will have you to be great at in 24 months’ time? What will you need to spend your time doing? If your answer is, “The same stuff as today”, you’re not trying hard enough.
Break the mold. More importantly, break your own mold.