Andy Warhol once quipped, “They always say time changes things, but you actually have to change them yourself”. I tend to agree with him. Change is a deliberate choice. You can’t change what you refuse to confront.
Early in my career, I learned a valuable lesson about change leadership: nothing stands in its way. Not organisational politics. Not status quo bias. Not fear. Nothing.
Funny enough, I learned this lesson working for people I never wanted to become. Fresh out of college and eager to find my way, my first manager deliberately made sure everyone else was aware that she was not “one of them”. She felt authority and leadership were one and the same, I guess. A few years later, I found myself working for a manager who believed intimidation inspired motivation and loyalty.
My advice to anyone focused on crafting a vision of yourself as a leader: don’t fail to see and understand the repeatable mistakes “leaders” make with remarkable consistency. Paying attention to these key deficiencies can be a priceless learning experience.
Today, I’m lucky enough to work for a company whose big idea is founded on challenging the status quo – shaping smart change. It’s a motivational mantra in and of itself. Built on the notion that change leadership is deliberate and taking risks is not only encouraged, but necessary. It comes not from “aha moments” or single events, but rather from hard work and the brilliance of what you can accomplish over time. Because closing the gap between what is (status quo) and what should be isn’t a destination; it’s a process.
At Hexagon, we believe in leaders who “work hard and change smart”. Leaders who are empathetic, approachable, comfortable with disruption, resilient after setbacks and highly focused on the big picture.
But of course, leadership styles come in many shapes and sizes.
Are you fearless, innovative, relentless or energised by change? Take this 7-question quiz. You just might be surprised to find out what leadership style best defines the Change Agent inside of you!
Wherever the quiz takes you, if you’re constantly striving to improve despite the obstacles you face, you’re taking great steps toward inspiring others to do the same.
The Shape of Potential. Shaping Smart Change.