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Posted by on Sep 27, 2013

5 Ways to Lead in Turbulent Times

Federal managers face numerous challenges in the current environment. You may not have control over the changes that are taking place, but you do have control over how you react. As a manager, you can choose to see change as a threat or an opportunity. Think for a second what could happen if you seized the opportunities created by change to innovate, increase efficiencies and learn.

Just like a worn out pair of shoes or tattered briefcase, some old leadership habits need to be thrown out to make way for new possibilities. My team at Management Concepts recently compiled 5 Essential NEW Leadership Habits for Federal Leaders. Download the complete list and rationale here.

Try adopting some of these habits:

1. Develop cross-functional skills and build personal networks.
Management silos are quickly becoming a relic of the past. To move quickly and drive innovation, you must be able to mobilize cross-functional teams and build strong relationships with other function areas.

2. Seek ways to experiment and “fail small” to drive change and innovation. Borrow an idea from The Lean Start-Up. Before investing hours of time and effort on a new strategy, test it with your target audience on a small scale. Allowing small failures makes your team more likely to pipe up with suggestions for improvement.

3. Make peace with change and focus on building resilience.
Focus on flexibility. Abandon rigid systems and processes in favor of flexible, more adaptive ones.

4. Tap into shared leadership capabilities Include more people in decision-making processes. In an uncertain climate, a fresh perspective can be invaluable.

5. Promote “WE” as leaders Focus on energizing others to lead. With all the negative energy out there, employees need a boost from an inspiring leader.

Download the complete list.

What do you think of the list? What changes have you made that proved successful? Over the next few weeks, my colleagues and I will be posting more information on how to adopt each of these habits.

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