No doubt, things need to be done and one of the tasks of leadership is to create the space where the doing is empowered. The same is valid when it comes to leading oneself, no blog post gets written by itself. The practice of doing is what leads us to achieve goals.
When doing becomes reactive things are different.
Then it’s easy to confuse activity with a fight or flight reaction.
When doing takes up all the energy things are also different.
Then there is no space left to recognize what is going on beyond the action.
When there is change, may it be one that is happening beyond our control or one that is being orchestrated, there always are stakeholders. The stakeholders include at least the team, the customers as well as society.
All of them react to an ongoing change, not all will voice their reactions but all will feel them. Depending on their reaction some will engage in the change, others will resist it. Within their groups, they will start to exchange amplifying the individual reactions. Leaders who are not taking the time nor able to read the emerging smoke signs will find themselves struggling with the developing dysfunctions.
Marketers learn to analyze and see the needs and desires of the different constituents they are working for. They create the change. Leaders need to go beyond, they create the change and deal with its impact. They need to take the time to see the dynamics as they develop and to learn how to react to them.
In a recent webinar on “Navigating the Human Side of Transitions in Times of Change” Roger Lehman phrased the shift reflective leaders have done. It’s one from “don’t simply stand there, do something” to “don’t simply do something, stand there” before stepping into action. It allows tuning into ourselves to then become able to tune into what’s happening for the others.
Reflecting on the state of the organization opens the door to knowing what the next step is. That’s different from simply deciding it.