Friday, September 23rd, 2016
As humans we seem to have an infinite capacity to live in denial. Whilst denial is a commonly used coping mechanism, it’s deadly for leaders. Surprisingly, it’s not uncommon to find leaders living in denial, failing to face a threatening shift in reality, a changing marketplace or changing customer expectations. Unfortunately many leaders ignore or deny their new reality, hoping the it will somehow disappear or that someone will come up with a magical solution.
Facing reality means that we take time to continuously assess and orientate themselves to the fast changing business environment. Facing reality requires us to remain open to new information, ready to adapt their strategies in support of their vision.
The art of managing and leading comes down to a simple thing: determining and facing reality about people, situations, products, and then acting decisively and quickly on that reality. Think how many times we have procrastinated, hoped it would get better. Most of the mistakes you’ve made have been through not being willing to face into it, straight in the mirror that reality you find, then taking action on it. That’s all managing is, defining and acting. Not hoping, not waiting for the next plan. Defining and doing it.
Failing to face reality means corrective action is never taken or delayed and the situation deteriorates. Convincing ourselves that things are better or different from reality is never a good idea.
Facing reality is crucial in life, not just in business. You have to see the world in the purest, cleanest way possible or you can’t make decisions on a rational basis.
Summing-up: Face reality, even when doing so is uncomfortable, and communicate candidly, even when doing so may sting.