A few months ago, when we talked about VUCA environments we had to turn to distant examples of North American companies -how much game they give when we want to explain something-, but they always make us fall into the same conclusion: "Yeah, but that's not what I live in my work."
After the arrival of COVID-19, this has been forgotten. Now everybody we already have a close and tangible example to turn to to explain and understand what this is about managing uncertain environments. And it is that in a context in which the capacity and agility of response is key and in which we have to live without the ability to look for excuses or comparisons with recent pasts, change and adaptation to it has become the norm.
And what is clear is that this uncertainty will not be temporary. The current situation will generate a series of changes that, in turn, will create others that will unleash a loop of continuous change. This is what we mean when we talk about the VUCA environment.
It can be a bit dizzy, yes, but we have to prepare and adapt in an agile way. And it is that we will no longer be able to have a long-term strategy or a very marked map of our path, but rather we will have to train ourselves to build it little by little. For this reason, we must replace this map with a compass that shows us the direction, and not so much the places we want to reach.
But just as not everyone knows how to read and interpret the maps that have helped us in other stages, guide Using the compass to avoid losing direction is not easy. And that is precisely the profile that will be most in demand in our companies: the people who guide us.
The new leader, much more than a boss
These last few months have served to understand the difference between boss and leader. And, if we have been able to do anything check in first person, is that "not all bosses are leaders, not all leaders of our companies are bosses."
Al talk about leaders It happens to us, as I said before, that we think of famous, differential people, pioneers who have created their companies, politicians, elite athletes…. But no one from our environment comes to mind.
Same because the word "leader" is associated, in the vast majority of occasions, to success, to influence or to be someone differential. However, for me, To be a leader is to be someone who people around you listen to, pay attention to, go to him / her to discuss their problems or situations or someone with whom we want to be and share things. Of these, without a doubt, we have many more examples in our environment.
I am very fortunate to be surrounded by leaders who inspire me, teach me and who share their experiences and knowledge. Recently, one of them recommended a book to me that has become a “reference”. Is about "The resounding leader creates more" Goleman, Boyatzis and McKee. And without wanting to tell you a lot, I think the title itself is already inspiring.
The 10 key qualities to be a reference
I feel that a good definition of the leader is his ability to resonate, that is to say of reaching people, emitting their waves to inspire and improve their environment. In short, to be a reference. But what qualities must leaders possess to be referents?
R esilientes - They adapt and assume change as a way of life, helping their environment to do it in the same way. They don't look for excuses, they look for answers.
E empathic - They understand the emotions and attitudes of their environment and take them into account, actively listening to contribute from the needs of each person.
F acyliners - In many cases, the answers have to come from who raises the question or the doubt and, for this, it has to be facilitated rather than giving the answer.
E rationally intelligent - They know each other emotionally and manage their own emotions to know and manage emotions that they generate in others.
R resonant - They generate influence, amplifying and generating more references.
E energetics - They are poles of energy that can be transmitted and amplified. Proactivity and a sparkle in the eyes are clear signs of these energy sources.
N atural - They are genuine; No one can be a reference with a mask on their face or imitating the behaviors of others. Naturalness is the foundation for trust and this is key to being someone others turn to.
T imoneles - In times of uncertainty -and these will be the norm-, most look for people who, calmly, guide the boat or, at least, help guide it from their role.
E links - They serve as a transmission belt and link people to achieve goals.
S port - They are those that lift the spirits, remember the purpose, encourage, comfort, listen, develop or, simply, are present.
Count on These 10 qualities are what will make the leader a true reference. A key figure that will undoubtedly be necessary for any company. And it is that without these people no company will be able to guide itself between the waves that are yet to come in an uncertain and more volatile future than ever.
Ultimately, anyone can be a reference, since it does not depend on the position you occupy, but on whether you meet these key characteristics to face the change and uncertainty that we will have to manage in the present and, above all, in the future.