We may be living in the time of greatest anxiety in the history of the Western world – just witness the recent presidential campaign – and its aftermath!
And if you are involved in leading cultural change we can guarantee you have anxiety on your team!
Anxiety is our natural response when we feel threatened or insecure. This threat always shows up in our minds and hearts as a sense of loss. This connection – loss and anxiety – is important for leaders to understand.
“If I don’t do well at my job I will lose my job and have no money.”
“All these external forces, people rigging the system, are going to end up hurting me and I can’t do anything about it”.
“I am never going to get ahead in this organization because these proposed changes will take away my status and as a result all my years of effort”.
Leader – if you are leading change this will inevitably be experienced as loss by some people and when they experience this loss their anxiety will go through the roof.
We’re going to assume that you have a handle on managing your own anxiety (if not, watch this blog – that is a big preoccupation of ours!). The important thing for you now to realize is that the people you are leading as you lead change are also experiencing anxiety and that you – as the leader – have the charge to create places where they can share this anxiety without being overwhelmed by it.
This means you must be fearless, non-anxious, non-defensive, and willing to take hits and be misunderstood. Tall order, isn’t it?
But if you can get there you will have the chance to lead the kind of change that will make a positive difference in the lives of your team, both on and off the job.
We’re aware that change leadership is a challenging endeavor, especially when you have to face down your own anxiety. You will most likely want to consider the services of a leadership coach – a trusted advisor who can help you manage your own anxiety and that of your team.
It’s hard to imagine a better investment for a change leader! To find out more, click here.