“Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do.”
– John Wooden
Whether it is circumstances out of your control or a somewhat calculated business move, many times leaders find themselves in a position where they feel they have little or no experience in a certain area of responsibility. But finding success in an area you do not immediately feel prepared for is not impossible. In understanding the universal skills, you may possess and developing a winning mindset, great leaders can easily thrive in a brand-new environment.
Every situation, in this regard, has its own unique set of circumstances, but the key to excelling in new environments is building up certain attributes that are effective even as circumstances change. One of these skills is in the development of skills themselves, meaning successful leaders are those who are constantly looking to add and enhance their skills in a myriad of ways. It is important to always be learning. Books, webinars, and mentorships are all tools vital in refining whatever skills you feel best suited for your working style. Being forever proactive in that regard is what separates adaptable leaders from poor leaders.
Perhaps the most useful and necessary attribute of adaptable leaders is strong interpersonal skills. All new situations breed unique circumstances but typically they all share at least some sort of person to person communication responsibility. Effective leadership nearly always includes the ability to manage tensions and deal with a wide variety of egos. One of the best ways to sharpen these interpersonal skills is by reflecting on past experiences and recognizing mistakes while also noting different outcomes. By seeing interpersonal situations from multiple perspectives, strong leaders are able to make more informed and effective decisions when problems arise.
Sometimes there is no controlling unexpected situations thrown at you as a leader. Great leaders understand this fact and develop the tools that best prepare them for unforeseen circumstances. Being a proactive learner and having strong interpersonal skills can better prepare you for nearly every environment you find yourself thrust into. Finding success in these new environments sets apart good leaders from great ones.
Kelly D. Scott
The world’s leading business advisory and executive coaching organization