6 Defining Traits of Change Leadership

The best leaders are those that not only survive change, but also personify it. After all, the only way to survive (especially an unwanted and unexpected change) is to get to the frontline with it.

The secret of top companies and innovators lie in their proactive stand in embracing change. Innovative change leadership is best characterized by six factors illustrated below.

1. Low Anxiety Levels

Anxiety prevents a person from truly realizing his potential. An anxious person usually responds in two ways: either they protect themselves or go on the offensive. Either way, the response is destructive and will stifle innovation and change.

2. Emotional stability

The best leaders are always in a mental state don’t swing from one mood to the other. They have a motivational attitude that is always ready to succeed in the job, without any depressive inclination that will curb the enthusiasm of the team.

3. Action-oriented Disposition

It’s one thing to come up with good solutions, but it’s another thing altogether to step up and be part of all the action. This is why you should stick to people who are willing to dive right into action.

4)         Confidence

By definition, learning, innovating, and changing require exploration of the unknown. It is natural to feel anxious about stepping into unknown territory. Exploration is not without risks. Scurvy, cannibals, poisonous snakes, avalanches, new suppliers that fail to deliver—the hazards that have befallen explorers are innumerable. But, new opportunities can only be identified by exploring the unknown. Therefore, people must hold the belief that, despite the unknown risks, the unknown outcomes will be positive. In other words, they must be confident in their ability to succeed.

Tip: Bring people onto your team who are not afraid to take risks and have experienced the sweet taste of success in the past. Also, consider measuring and rewarding the exploration process itself. True innovation requires knocking on many doors before finding the one that opens. So, it is important to maintain an appropriate perspective and be persistent.

5)         Openness

To explore new ideas and learn how to apply them one must be receptive to them. We can always think of a million reasons something won’t work. But, if we open our minds to the possibility that things MIGHT work then we can truly start to innovate. But, simply being receptive is not enough, It requires exposing our minds to many different perspectives. We are able to see more ways new ideas can work if we equip ourselves with a vast repertoire of ideas.

Tip: Hire people who have diverse experiences and multidimensional skills. Give team members “white space” time and encourage them to gain different experiences and perspectives. (More Here)

6. Risk Tolerance

Every action in the workplace involves a certain level of risk—the question is how the leader deals with it. Does he shirk and simply accept his fate, or does he take well-calculated steps to address them?