Leaders tell us they’re looking for more meaning in their work and life. This article sums it up.
Dear Leader, Times A’ Changing
When Bob Dylan wrote the lyrics to his hit song The Times They Are A-Changing, his words were to sum up the decade of the 1960s which sparked an intermingling of cultural, political, social and commercial trends. It was a time of new, exciting and far-reaching events which were to shape the next 40 years. Prominent themes such as freedom, transformation and exploration accelerated during the time.
Leaders were not immune to such explosive change. Over the next decades, they redefined their visions and sought to inspire organizations that were more customer-centered, people-focused, environmentally aware and socially responsible. Leaders throughout all sectors came to understand these responsibilities as more than competitive advantages, but ways to make a positive difference in their organizations, communities and the wider world.
What about today? Yes, the issues are well and truly bewildering. On the one hand, the pressure for greater performance and profitability is driving results. On the other, the human side of enterprise calls for a new approach to leadership. Management-style thinking may predominate the workplace, yet the need for authenticity and a blend of complementary skills and wisdom is essential to take organizations forward.
Never before have leaders needed to be more awake, aware and alive.
Never before have leaders needed more agility, flexibility and dexterity to navigate the waters of change. Never before have they had to learn, lead and live using all of their intelligences equally – mental, emotional, social and spiritual. Never before has leadership been more important in driving results, realizing human potential and living a balanced, fulfilling life.
CEOs the world over are challenged to operate effectively and profitably in an increasingly volatile, uncertain and complex environment. New technologies and social media have changed the nature and extent of customer relationships. Globalism and ease of collaboration have altered the competitive landscape. And an increasingly diverse workforce that is both younger and aging is simultaneously presenting opportunities and challenges.
What does it take to adapt to our changing world and lead well?
Immutable ideals. Core values. Clear vision. Uncommon insight. Spiritual courage. Organizational soul. Strategies, processes and operating practices that are practical, effective and open to change.
In recent years, leaders have come to us seeking more than strategic advice, learning excellence and organizational counsel. There is urgency in two rapidly emerging directions: a quest for greater meaning, and a desire to make a greater contribution.
Leaders openly tell us that their skills and knowledge aren’t enough. They’re surrounded by a mountain of challenges and a constant stream of pressure. They’re flooded with plans and tactics and actions. They long for time to reflect. To make better decisions. To have greater depth and meaning in the way they lead and the way they live. To make a greater contribution to their enterprise, to their people, to their family and outward into the world. Theirs is a call to the greatness within. To a spirited internal journey deep into who they are and what they stand for. Theirs is a call to rock the very foundation of their understanding of leadership.
Are you ready to apply the new leadership?
+ The new leadership is powerful, practical and authentic.
+ The new leadership is bold, honest and creative.
+ The new leadership is inspirational, compassionate and clear.
It is borne of the old and the new, the timeless and the progressive. It reaches in to the best of who we are and to the enduring traditions that have guided us. It brings us to the wellspring of wisdom and the fresh waters of originality. The new leadership is developed from the inside out and the outside in, and most often requires personal champions and faithful mentors to guide the way.
The intent of the new leader is to go deep and engage in a process of inquiry, exploration, development and transformation, peeling the layers of hardened concepts that no longer work in a turbulent world or serve to satisfy a thirst for greater meaning or service. The new leadership is about creating new systems, beliefs and practices that open the gateway to new thinking and new solutions.
In order to participate, what’s required? A readiness to claim yourself as the author of your life. A willingness to leap into the unknown with a trusted guide. A consistent practice of discovery through reflection, transformation and healing. A desire to liberate the greatness within you, and allow others to do the same.
If you’re ready for the journey, it would a privilege to speak with you.
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