In January through early April of this year, I shared with all of you on a weekly basis about working thought the trough of chaos during interesting times. Then throughout the rest of the spring, I covered the many topics that we explored at the Spring 2018 From Vision to Action Executive Roundtable. For example, I shared about the connection between organizational history, culture and meaningful work within successful organizations, how to improve thinking within an organization, and how leaders can be both brave and bold during difficult times. In July, August and early September, I wrote weekly about the lessons I’ve learned from the countless hours of visiting with great leaders. And finally this fall, I shared with all of you what we explored during the Fall 2018 From Vision to Action Executive Roundtable. The focus this year was on building, maintaining, and improving teams during the digital era. And now, we come to the last full week before Christmas, Kwanzaa and then New Year’s Eve.
In a world filled with challenges, complexities and problems, we, as leaders, can become overwhelmed, worried, numb, and burned out. We also can become cynical about the future and our ability to adapt to the new and emerging challenges and problems around the world. We could just give up and choose not to lead. But I strongly discourage us from falling into this mindset.
Instead, I encourage each of us to remember four things. First, organizational change is the sum of individual change. Therefore, we must commit to on-going personal and professional development. As Gandhi said so many years ago, “we must be the change we wish to see in the world.”
Second, we must create “islands of sanity”, referencing a term from the work of Margaret Wheatley. We must create safe and empowering spaces at home and at work where people can do the deep personal and professional work of becoming better people and better partners with colleagues throughout the company, and the world.
Third, this is the season when we must come together and rediscover what unites us rather than what divides us. We must focus on finding and rekindling inside ourselves and others a sense of higher purpose to our lives and to our work. We must build the bonds which will hold and support us through our challenges. We can not let others stand alone to face the difficulties of this time.
And finally, we must give the gift of love, support and respect this season to all we meet. By this act alone, we will transform the big picture and create a place were people will feel like their life is meaningful and special.
May this holiday season be the beginning of many special moments of connection and joy for you and yours. Thanks for including me in this important work, and I look forward to being back in touch with all of you on Monday, January 7, 2019.
Warm wishes and happy holidays to each of you!