Five Truths for Thriving Today

What if this is as good as it gets? What if the new normal is feeling like you are trapped in continuous game of chess where the pieces on the board change without warning ... just like Alice in Wonderland?

Depending on where you live and what you do, the economy is great, lousy or somewhere in between. And, tomorrow it could and probably will all change.

In times of uncertainty, people run toward value in their leaders just as they do in their investments. Here are five truths to remember and act upon if you want to thrive in good times, bad times, or in times, like today, of enormous uncertainty.

Everything is connected. Every decision we make has a ripple effect that is positive or negative for those we seek to influence. Decisions made in a vacuum often create unintended consequences when we fail to consider all the implications of our actions - even the obvious ones we can easily overlook. To succeed in the future, we must fully embrace the magnitude, complexity, and simplicity of our connections.

Past success proves you were right...once. Continuous learning and improvement are an obligation not an option. In times of uncertainty, each of us must be better tomorrow than we are today. Now is the time to reexamine every process, procedure, and system in your operation to ensure its effectiveness and efficiency. And, now is the time to focus on your own professional development. The competencies and skills that served you well in the past may or may not be relevant in the future.

Relationships make the difference. Successful relationships require commitment, time and hard work. This can be observed in the way prosperous organizations relate to their customers, suppliers and employees. Reduced communication is often the first symptom of a relationship in trouble. Now is the time to invest more time in building and nurturing the relationships that will carry you through difficult times.

Integrity matters. Integrity breeds trust, and trust is the currency of success in the midst of uncertainty. When trust is absent, people look out for their own self-interests, even if doing so may hurt them or their organization in the future. But you can help others to look beyond their self-interests and focus on the team. And you can demonstrate integrity by telling the truth, honoring commitments, and doing what is right - especially when it is inconvenient. Remember, everyone is watching.

Everyone leads. True leadership has very little to do with position and everything to do with your ability to influence others. Leaders help us move from where we are to where we need to be.

Here are five things to do today to thrive tomorrow and beyond.
  1. Focus on yourself. Make sure that you are worthy of the trust required to earn the respect of others.
  2. Create and stay focused on a compelling vision. It will generate enthusiasm and create opportunities for ownership.
  3. Identify the gaps between your vision and reality. Comparing where you are to where you want to be creates energy for positive change.
  4. Pinpoint a few critical actions that will have the greatest impact and create a plan that focuses your energy and efforts on those. The best plans move you toward your vision, help you live your values, overcome a weakness or threat, or take advantage of a strength or opportunity.
  5. Execute your ideas. As Thomas Edison said, "Vision without execution is a hallucination." Nothing changes until we change the performance and behavior that moves us forward.

The French novelist Marcel Proust said, "The real art of discovery consists not in finding new lands, but in seeing with new eyes." The ability to see uncertainty as an opportunity to take performance to new heights allows you to discover the leadership potential that lies within each of us.

Randy Pennington is an award-winning author, speaker, and leading authority on helping organizations deliver positive results in a world of accelerating change. His keynote seminars and workshops are informative, engaging, and memorable. To learn more or to hire Randy for your next meeting, visit www.penningtongroup.com, email info@penningtongroup.com, or call 972-980-9857.