Relationships are primary and everything else is derivative. There will always be a point where success will hinge on the quality of relationships. Expertise passes through the conduit of relationships.
Capacities bear more fruit than deficiencies: Focus on the gifts and the capacities first rather than on what is wrong. Deficiency has been harvested for most of us; there is little left to explore.
Choose development over learning: At this point in life and work, we already know what we need to do; we just don’t do it. The required next step is to build capacity through development and experiences. There will be new learnings but they are in second chair.
It’s a VUCA world: Today’s world is more volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous (VUCA). A leader’s thinking capacity must be equal or superior to the complexity of her work environment. If it is not, that complexity (social and wicked problems) overwhelms her capacity to cope. This is why leading is hard and not for everyone.
Blend horizontal development with vertical development: Horizontal development is where leaders practice the skills for leading change, strategy, organizational culture, and execution, necessary skills to lead for sure. Vertical development is focused developing leadership thinking capacity. This capacity is developed in stages and requires time. The outcome of vertical development is the ability to think in more complex, systemic and interdependent ways.
Respect the system: Everything and everyone plays a critical role within your system. Learning how to see and think systemically is a reality-based skill that offers unusual leverage for mobilizing people.
Meet the change halfway: We never have to worry about having opportunities to change. Life provides the turbulence and complexity. We don’t have to induce change, seek it out, push it or manage it. We need only join it.