What does it mean to be a good leader, now?

Have you ever stopped to consider how many changes you and your organization had to make to survive during COVID-19? Probably quite a few. At Cylient, we course-corrected constantly to adjust to our sudden new reality, including becoming a 100% remote organization and offering a new digital learning product. That’s what businesses do, right? They adjust to changes in their environment to remain competitive.

Interestingly, organizations rarely ask: Who do our leaders need to be now to meet these new needs? What does it mean to be a good leader, now? As a result, the gap between how we lead and what is needed from leaders gets wider and wider.

As we face more modern problems, our primary approach to leadership needs to modernize, too. So, what does it mean to be a good leader, now?

What Most Organizations Believe it Means to Be a Good Leader

Direct Approach to Leadership

Think about what your organization believes it means to be a good and effective leader. Perhaps leaders believe it is their job to:

  • Keep their area under control
  • Always have the right answers
  • Make their numbers any way they can
  • Tell people what to do
  • Punish mistakes

Compare this to our most pressing business challenges which increasingly:

  • Are so complex it is impossible to predict outcomes
  • Have few or no “right” answers
  • Continuously evolve, even after the issue is “resolved”
  • Require the collaboration of diverse stakeholders to make meaningful change

As you can see, there is a huge misalignment between our new, complex challenges and our current control-focused approach to leadership. In fact, trying to control complexity with our traditional leadership approaches only makes matters worse. The more we try to tighten the grip on these multifaceted, ever-evolving challenges, the more strained we all become. When traditional leadership beliefs are used to manage our new realities:

  • It seems like no one is accountable
  • Leaders become reactive out of frustration—and sometimes fear
  • People burn out trying to make things happen
  • People protect themselves by avoiding the challenges altogether
  • Purposeful change is challenging (or nonexistent)

We will never resolve our most pressing, complex issues with this approach to leadership.

What We Believe It Means to Be a Good Leader, Now

What leadership can be

Our clients often say one of the primary benefits of our Coaching in the Moment® workshops is that it rewires what people believe it means to be a good and effective leader. The foundational “in the moment” coaching concepts teach people how to lead with curiosity, compassion and courage—and why that matters now. This Change-Able approach to leadership creates psychologically safe places where people have productive conversations that move the needle of change forward.

So, do your leaders have a consistent definition of what it means to be a good leader, now? Or, do the leaders in your organization need a leadership update? Our Coaching in the Moment workshop can help support you in changing this belief. Ask about how you can experience it for yourself by emailing info@cylient.com.

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