Don’t Let Chaos Kill You: Thoughts for the New Year

Remember the days when, if you paid attention to what was going on in your company, your industry, and the world; if you followed procedures and were decent to your people, you could be a pretty good boss and deliver good results?

Remember when you could count on best practices being…best practices?

I’ll allow you a moment of nostalgia…then it’s time to quickly move ahead.

The world as you remember it has changed, and the pace of change has gotten faster. Leading and managing have gotten harder. The rules are no longer clear and there is little room for error as everything is instantly blasted out across the all-encompassing digital universe.

The digital world appeared. And rapidly took over. You have to be able to lead in an environment where employees–who grew up in this digital world–have great confidence in their knowledge and expertise and high expectations of their worth and how they should be treated.

You need to be able to lead in a world where every customer expects to have their desires individually and specifically addressed. Instantly. Perfectly.

Incremental improvement is no longer enough. Leading your business forward step by step leaves you in the dust as new business models appear overnight and the next day, have taken over.

You need to be prepared to leap.

To be a good leader today you need to think about things that don’t exist yet.

You need to be a visionary. To be bold and confident as you look into the future, aim high, and inspire and energize those around you to create amazing things. Think: Elon Musk’s Boring Company.

You need to be focused on solutions not only for problems that everyone recognizes but also for things that others haven’t noticed. Think: the iPhone.

You need to lead from the front. The troops need to see you leading the charge as you guide them forward against all obstacles to success, but paired with that…

You need to take accountability for all that happens, by which I really mean the difficulties and things that go badly.

But in the midst of all the chaotic shaking up of the status quo, you must stay calm. No matter what happens, no matter how tough conditions get, you need to be a pillar of strength that others can trust and depend on. No matter what, you need to remain confident of success and guide people through the difficult times.

The new year will surely bring on even more radical changes. Get out in front of them. Become the leader envisioning what can be and leading the way in bringing this future into existence.





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