Now more than ever, with the innumerous changes happening around us, effective leadership is needed.
Working from home and online has become the norm; addressing direction changes in markets and strategy is ongoing; and motivating remote staff has become a priority.
Leading change is one of the greatest challenges facing any business leader and in this article we’ll consider some of the ingredients for long-term success in a changing world.
It is often said that change is the only constant. Whilst the covid pandemic presents particular challenges – not least because of the uncertainty and a future that is yet to be determined – it’s an attitude and capability to change that will determine the long-term success of every business post-covid 19.
Whilst it is each business leader’s responsibility to equip themselves and their organisation to move through the Change Curve (click here to go to the blog), that’s not a responsibility to bear in isolation. Playing the long game is not a solo enterprise; it demands a high performing team and it is strong leadership that will orchestrate the best team performance.
None of us are born with all the answers, but we can learn to be better leaders. In fact, research shows us that as much as 75% of leadership is learnt, and that’s certainly the experience of more than 200 Gloucestershire owner-managers who have been through the LEAD™ programme. Those who aspire to long-standing achievement know that ‘big ideas’ and entrepreneurship are just part of the equation.
Simon Carey, CEO of Barnwood Group found that the process allowed him to “develop and expand my understanding of leadership and it provided me with a toolkit of ideas, techniques and methods to find solutions to the challenges I regularly face as head of an SME.”
For Julia Russell, Director, Bowland Stone, the experience truly supported her leadership development: "Since LEAD™ my confidence as a leader has grown and developed to a level I never expected. I wasn’t expecting to come away with a completely different perspective of leadership and belief in myself."
For Nicola Bird, Safety and Business Development Director at KW Bell, she found that “even during the COVID crisis, I have addressed my business plan, prepared a Budget versus Actual financial statement, segmented my market and reflected a lot on change management. This has been critical learning for me and the business after such a dramatic change in the industry and economy and will no doubt continue to help me through it.”
Holding true to your vision, building an effective top team, creating strong employee engagement to drive productivity, and establishing the culture and systems for continuous improvement, are some of the ingredients that we see in businesses with enduring success.
For Don Robins, Managing Director, Printwaste Recycling & Shredding, increasing his self-confidence inspired belief in his Senior Management Team, giving them the confidence to take on more responsibility. “For me, the driving force for coming on LEAD™ was to make sure I secured the next stages of growth by developing my middle management and leading them.”
Similarly, Anthony Locke, Managing Director, Frocester Group found that he was “more engaged with the team and together we are engaged with the businesses and the way we want to take them forward. I am more confident in delegating tasks. They have noticed this and have stepped up too.”
Excellent business practice, highly effective leadership, and our ability to reflect, analyse, act and learn from our own experiences – and those of others – that’s what will not only help us ride the waves of change in the next couple of years, but for every unknown change yet to come.