Leadership must offer stability because without the stability of mission, vision, and strategy, a company would operate inefficiently at best.
Without stable leadership, workplaces can become confusing and sometimes chaotic places.
But leadership must also be dynamic. Leadership that is stuck in a particular mindset regardless of what is happening outside the executive suite is a liability.
Think about a simple device that combines stability and dynamic operation, like a gyroscope. The device maintains orientation and angular velocity (stability), yet responds to forces acting upon its elements (agility). Because it is both stable and dynamic, it keeps the submarine, the space telescope, or the video camera properly oriented, even when outside forces change.
Likewise, strong leaders in today’s ever-changing world of business must be able to accept forces – some of which may be completely unexpected – while maintaining the stability and orientation of the company as it moves forward.
To Manage Technology, You Must Understand Technology
We live in an age of rapid technological advancement, and it’s not reasonable to expect every executive to understand every technological change. However, today’s leaders must understand the direction of technology, what’s available now, and what’s on the horizon in order to make decisions that keep the business competitive. Obviously, a company can’t just take up every new device and technology the minute it’s available. But when leaders understand the direction of technology, and the most likely future possibilities it will bring, they can make better decisions about which technologies to incorporate, and can communicate better with technical staff to make it happen in the right way, at the right time.
Decision-Making and Listening Skills More Important than Ever
Decisions made by executive leaders can have far-reaching consequences. Businesses are more complex than they used to be, and they employ people with a wider variety of backgrounds and experiences. No leader can assume they know what’s going on in the minds of “the workforce” because the workforce is so diverse.
Today’s executive cannot seem tone deaf or out of touch with the rest of the organization.
Therefore, a leader’s ability to listen, take in the information, and make decisions based on insights gained from that information, is of critical importance. Top leaders realize this, and this is one reason executive coaching is so often employed specifically to help leaders develop their listening skills. Better listening leads to better decisions, which lead to better results.
Executive Coaching Helps Leaders Balance Stability, Agility
In many ways, today’s executive coaching is designed to help leaders balance stability with change. Change is inevitable, and managing it properly requires many elements, including stability, vision, and understanding the world and the technologies in it. Rare today is the company where the executive’s word is sacrosanct. However rigidly a business is run, it is part of a world where change is inevitable, and if it doesn’t adapt, it will wither.
At the same time, consumers, workers, and companies need a stable foundation, or the results can include confusion and chaos. Executive coaching is in part about helping leaders create a strong foundation onto which they can build. It’s also about ensuring that leaders know how to face reality and avoid pretending things are the way they always have been. It’s a balancing act, and with many organizations, executive coaching is necessary to master it.
Technology is the reason behind many of the changes in today’s business world. Technology is a tool that can accelerate supply chains, facilitate communication, automate formerly manual processes, and inspire innovation. It’s not easy being a leader when technology changes practically as fast as we can learn how to use it. That’s why leadership has to be agile, and it’s one reason why so many businesses enlist in executive coaching.
I have worked with leaders in many industries, for a long time, and I can say with confidence that it is the leaders who are willing to change and grow who make the most positive impact. Helping leaders learn how to balance stability and agility through executive coaching ultimately helps their organizations and the people in them. If you’re interested in learning more, I encourage you to check out my books, as well as my speaking and leadership training services.