Managing paradox is an essential leadership skill. The particular paradox I have in mind today relates to change. Leaders are often acknowledged for their willingness and ability to effect needed changes. This may involve creating something new, improving what exists, or letting go of something. Initiating and managing a significant change and the accompanying transition requires great care and thoughtfulness. Done skillfully, it can move an individual, an enterprise, or a community dramatically forward.
Food for Thought ~
And now for the paradox: another job of a good leader is to protect those things which should not be changed. In many cases, these are values, systems, or cultural traditions, just to give a few examples. And so the leadership trait that emerges here as the critical success factor is the good judgement to know what to change and what not to change.
Question for the day ~
How are you at evaluating when, what and how to make a change, and knowing when and what not to change? How might you fine tune your judgement skills?
One of the early Greek philosophers, Heraclitus, appears to have been the first to say, “There is nothing permanent except change.” Another translation of his insight is: “Everything changes and nothing remains still.” I offer a corollary: “Therefore, we may as well get good at it.”