The times they are a changin’
Sure, you’re likely to have thought about the famous Bob Dylan song from the ‘60s when you read that line. That simple line has many applications but it’s particularly true when we talk about mindset and leadership in 2017 and beyond.
Today’s business landscape is unique and it continues to evolve. What may have been considered good leadership 20, 10 or even 5 years ago, would be regarded in a completely different light today. When it comes to mindset and leadership and how they are both linked, we need to look at the following 3 key areas.
In terms of leadership, one thing is for certain: old-school management styles will not work in today’s business landscape and worst of all, they have the ability to kill workplace culture. Gone are the days when ‘employees never sit higher than their employer’ or the junior in the office is obligated to fetch management coffee as part of their daily role. Successful leadership in today’s times cannot be hierarchical, it needs to be vertical. If this is something you and/or your organisation is struggling with, it’s time to change your way of thinking. Tough, stern or an autocratic leadership style is not going to work with today’s up and coming workforce. There is a real need for vulnerability, openness and honesty – this is how you build trust with your employees and begin to understand their way of thinking to help maximise your business’ long-term success. Remember, just because something has always been done a certain way, it doesn’t mean it should continue to be done that way.
#2: Culture and values
They may feel like buzzwords but they have gained traction in our business lexicon recently for good reason – both are vital to both individual and organisational success. Before we delve into why, let’s look at what each actually means.
Culture: the ideas, ways and behaviour that distinguishes one group of people from another.
Values: principles and standards of behaviour. What we consider to be important in life.
Every organisation needs to establish and implement their culture and values. A company’s vision and goals should be aligned with its culture and values, with its leaders showing the way by leading from the front. It’s not just about having pretty frames up on the wall declaring what everyone’s position within the business is – it’s about leaders making decisions based on the company culture and its values (for example, only people who fit in with the company culture/values should be employed). At the end of the day, this ensures the business thrives and succeeds well into the future.
#3: Balance and mindset
Balance is a part of our everyday lives, even more so in business. Having a healthy work-life balance can be a challenge for most leaders but we must realise that failing to have enough balance, can have a serious impact on our mindset, our business and those around us. We are not robots and no one can work 24/7 – leadership often comes with long hours and difficult decisions but it’s important that we’re keeping a check on ourselves. How many hours are you working? Are you struggling to switch off at night and during the weekends? Are you having trouble getting to sleep on a consistent basis because you’re concerned about work-related issues?
You can only push your mind and body so far. If your work-life balance is out of whack for too long, it’s likely to have devastating consequences to your mindset and mental health. You may start feeling like you’re going around in circles, struggle to see the way forward and ultimately, fail to lead people as best you can. Make it a habit to switch off your phone at a certain time daily, plan uninterrupted time with your loved ones, schedule in regular holidays and check-in with yourself as to how you’re feeling, why that may be the case and what needs to change if you are struggling in certain areas.
At Coraggio, we’re dedicated to helping business leaders to grow as both individuals and business leaders. If you’re keen to learn more about what we do and how, feel free to get in touch with us and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can.