The long awaited 2021 has arrived and unlike the mad rush of excitement and anticipation that preceded previous years; the 2021 curtain was raised to reveal leaders with eyes peeled, standing on tiptoes under a lighted sign that reads, ‘proceed with caution’. It is not the first and certainly would not be the last time that corporations have been called upon to mutate. However, the corporations that embrace both the word and the spirit of the change are the ones who are most successful.
Although, change is the only perpetual phenomenon, managing change within the corporation is not always easy; in fact, change has been known to ‘throw many experienced leaders for a loop’. However, in the present corporate climate no corporation can afford to stand still.
Consequently, the faster the espousal is made to the new, the faster it becomes less new and more normal. In order to effectively manage change, our leaders themselves must change. This begs for new perspectives, new attitudes and a new work culture at all levels of the corporation. It is imperative that the leadership have a good understanding of the benefits of the change and the approach that the corporation intends to take to achieve the new normal, before they attempt to lead the subordinates there. This is essential because, when subordinates observe inconsistencies and uncertainty in their leaders, they are often reluctant to follow their lead.
Time does not always permit a long and rigorous planning process, but an open and flexible plan for transition is better than no plan at all. A plan keeps the corporation focused and eliminates assumptions and ambiguity among employees. The fluidity of the current environment does not lend itself for a gradual transition process. Therefore, the implementation must be done with a sense of urgency, while building momentum and encouraging internal and external support. This, however, means that our leaders can no longer afford to be nonchalant and disengaged. Instead, an individual metamorphosis has now become necessary at the pinnacle of our corporations, this is compulsory as the New Year commands a new normal and a new normal is only possible with a new you (leaders).
Often corporations achieve change, but later fall back to business as usual. Therefore, long term consistent positive change is only sustained if it is accompanied by a change in corporate culture and individual outlook.
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