Call An Audible: Becoming An Agile Leader
n the past, companies could spot trends and threats in advance and take the time to prepare for them. What a luxury! Now, it can feel like a new meteor is heading for us every day. Technology is changing hourly, and our ability to plan for the future is limited by our imaginations… but who knows what dreams will come true.
Companies need people to be able to work at the speed of change, making agile leaders more and more valuable.
Agility is not an easy thing to master. We are not all wired to be flexible, and some personalities are not attuned for quick changes. For example, do you prefer a predictable schedule? How about clear black-and-white, right and wrong decisions? Do you like to work a plan all the way to the end, or are you comfortable changing course? Change can be hard.
Others naturally drive through change. In fact, the best football quarterbacks are known for the ability to call an “audible.” For example, you might have heard Peyton Manning yell, “Omaha!” on the line of scrimmage. He was letting his offensive lineman know that the time on the clock was running out and the original play they were going to run wouldn’t work.
I’m also known for calling audibles. I’ve become comfortable with change and adapting to my situations. It may drive my husband crazy, but in the aisles of Home Depot, sometimes you have to rethink a project, given the circumstances. In a coaching session, I must be able to adjust to the needs of my client or shift focus and intention for a meeting on a dime.
Don’t get me wrong -- agile leaders never embrace change just for the sake of change. Leaders must be curious, not impulsive. They ask the right questions, seek to understand the environment, and only then determine what is needed to address the situation. This agility becomes easier when leaders can connect their situation with the organization’s overall mission.
Some people cannot adjust to changing surroundings and prefer sticking their heads in
the sand. Their egos tend to get in the way, keeping their employees doing the same thing over and over, expecting a different outcome – the definition of insanity.
Agile leaders are able to break that pattern and position their teams in the best place to address the challenges ahead.
Is your inability to adjust to change holding back your career? Let’s discuss how we can build more flexibility in your leadership style.