We need a new approach to leadership to get us through this time of change.
To find it, we have to understand what we mean by ‘leadership‘?
The essence of great leadership, we believe, is about delivering just two things: inspiration and results.
The best leaders are the ones who get results. The best leaders are also the ones who inspire us the most. The truly great leaders are the ones who somehow manage to combine both inspiration and results.
So finding a new approach to leadership in times of change is about finding new ways to deliver inspiration and results, in times of change.
Where shall we begin?
At first glance it might seem to make sense to start by focusing on results. After all, there are so many urgent issues and crises we need to address that we don’t really have time to step back and think about ‘inspiration’.
But there will always be another crisis. And crisis creates stress. And then stressed-out people don’t see the situation clearly, which stresses them out even more, which leads to poor decisions, which then get implemented badly, and the net result is that the crisis doesn’t get resolved, and the churning just gets worse: both our inner emotional churning and the outer churning in the world.
But if we focus instead on finding new ways to create emotional engagement and inspiration in these times of change, then four things happen. We learn to see our situations more calmly and more clearly. We learn to find more options for moving forward. We become more certain about the outcomes we want to create. And we learn to describe them in ways that inspire us more to want to make them happen.
Then, when we came to implementation, we become more focused, more enthusiastic, more efficient, effective, and adaptable to changing circumstances. And this creates results that that last.
Creating results is the ‘Outer Leadership’ half of The Churning. Creating inspiration is the ‘Inner Leadership’ half. And we cannot expect to lead others until we first learn to lead ourselves.
Or, think about it this way: when you’re on a plane, every single pre-flight safety check tells you the same thing,
“Put on your own oxygen mask first, secure it, and breathe normally before helping others with theirs.”
We have to start with inspiration. This book, called Inner Leadership, will give you the tools to put your own ‘oxygen mask’ in place and create calmness, clarity, and inspiration in yourself. Then you will be ready to do the same for others.
Then you will be able move forward together to create the results you want, secure in the knowledge that, no matter what happens, you will be able to create the inspiration needed to address it.
This is Inner Leadership.
Adapted from Inner Leadership: tools for building inspiration in times of change.
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