Lessons From Leadership: Mindset Agility

The leaders of today 'make it happen' by embracing complexity and marrying what appear to be contradictory mindsets into a dynamic and agile approach toward their careers, their organizations, and their lives.

Lessons From Leadership: Mindset Agility

The leaders of today 'make it happen' by embracing complexity and marrying what appear to be contradictory mindsets into a dynamic and agile approach toward their careers, their organizations, and their lives.

They have the strategic ability to pull and release each mindset lever to differing degrees depending upon their context and objectives. They reconcile tensions by adjusting their approaches and actions along a continuum of mindset dualities that appear contradictory but in fact can be complementary. Their mindsets are fluid, flexible, and not fixed. This is 'mindset agility.'

Just as limiting beliefs about ourselves, capabilities, strengths, and defining features create self-imposed barriers, fixed mindsets also prevent us from exploring the powerful levers in our career toolkit.

 

We can fall victim to a life of immovable mindset extremes:

We have either an 'individualistic' mindset or a 'collective' mindset. We may believe our success is our sole responsibility and overlook the opportunity to build upon the generosity and support of others. Alternatively, we may wait for those around us to elevate us and remain in a standstill as we do not assume personal responsibility for our career.

We are either an 'adventurer' or a 'planner'. We may be so meticulously planned that we overlook unexpected and potentially career changing opportunities or turn them down in fear of deviating from our controlled approach. In contrast, we may be an adventurer who wants to leave room for spontaneity, yet that results in us shunning plans and proactive approaches to prioritizing what is important to us. We end up living an unorganized, inefficient, and reactive 'inbox life', rather than crafting an 'outbox life' according to our priorities, goals, and objectives.

We are either 'inward' focused or 'outward' focused.We may prioritize our self-development and exploration at the expense of opening our eyes, ears, hearts, and minds to the critical inputs and insights provided by those around us. Alternatively, we may be so curious about the outside world and our endless quest for external knowledge and expertise that we leave no time or space to build a deeper understanding of ourselves.

 

With 'mindset agility,' the tradeoffs above do not exist. It is not a game.

Women leaders who have crafted careers and lives they love have done so by understanding the delicate, dynamic, and powerful balance of mindsets. They have a strong sense of personal responsibility, yet also understand the importance of connectivity and the role that collaborative efforts play in supporting their careers and lives. They are adventurers seeking risks, adapting to uncertainty, and being opportunistic all while purposefully and proactively planning the 'why', 'what', and 'how' of their careers. They have a plan but are open to it changing. They seek a deeper sense of themselves and invest in their personal reflection and development, yet they do not lose sight of their outward lens and hunger for external knowledge, interactions, and insights to fuel their approaches to life and work.

For aspiring leaders, the lesson is simple: embrace 'mindset agility.'

Future leaders do not have to exist in the black and white of forced mindset dichotomies. Instead, they can embrace the gray in between and learn how to adjust their mindset levers to unleash their strengths, thrive in their careers, and build meaningful, exciting, and fulfilling lives.

 

Download "I MAKE IT HAPPEN BY....."