3 Ways To Be An Effective Leader In Times Of Change

Hernan Marino

In today’s global marketplace, change is constant and everywhere. Innovation is transforming entire industries as companies compete with the latest Group Of Business People In Conference Room, Businesswoman Pointing At Presentation Board --- Image by © Eric Audras/PhotoAlto/Corbisproducts and services to meet the needs of businesses and consumers that are increasingly on the move.

For business leaders trying to navigate these changes, the challenge is daunting. How can a leader keep his/her team focused on achieving their goals while dealing with daily distractions, obstacles, and changing game plans?

Here are three ways for leaders to navigate the twists and turns on the road to success:

  • Make your business plan a GPS plan. Lock in your ultimate goal/destination and believe that you will arrive successfully, even with roadblocks and detours along the way. Take time every day to envision what it will look like to reach your goals. Looking into the future will help you while on the road to success. As the driver, you are acutely aware of how each turn brings you closer to your destination. As a team leader, you get to be the GPS voice. Will you choose a calm, confident tone, or a frustrated, hurried one? Choose the voice of reason to ensure the best, most productive environment. No one benefits from panic.
  • Maintain focus. This can be a challenge with the distractions and struggles leaders face in today’s global marketplace. Select a role model or mentor to inspire you to stay firmly planted in your vision. Set the example for those around you who need help staying focused as well. Take time to discuss the company’s philosophy and mission statement with coworkers and partners. Know your goals and establish parameters and timelines for projects to help you stay on target. Use available resources to determine how well you are meeting goals and what kind of impact they are having on the employees and clients. Most importantly, accept that there will be times when focus seems elusive. Sometimes taking a break is the best way to recharge your batteries and find a new perspective.
  • Communicate regularly with your team. Communication and transparency promote a team environment that allows all players to stay focused and keep the goal in the forefront. Everyone on the team should be keenly aware of each other’s goals, challenges, and opportunities so they can support one another along the way. Decisions will be made thinking of the long-term team goal. Be prepared to listen to your team and support them along their journey. Some team members will struggle more than others, and it is your responsibility as a leader to encourage, support, and empower each one to reach their goals and to provide resources and direction to help members accomplish them. Make sure the lines of communication are open and be ready to acknowledge and respond as you navigate.

Some say the road to success is paved with failure, but for leaders who want to reach the desired destination amidst the chaos of daily life, clarity, focus, and communication are three bricks you can’t afford to forget on your road to effective leadership.

Looking for more insight on effective leadership? See 6 Managing Skills That Companies Take for Granted.


Hernan Marino

About Hernan Marino

Hernan Marino is Chief Operations Officer of marketing and Global Head of SME/Partner Marketing at SAP, the market leader in enterprise application software. SAP (NYSE: SAP) helps companies of all sizes and industries run better. Hernan leads SAP Marketing’s digital transformation, marketing automation strategy and SAP’s growth plans in the SME marketplace.