By Elisa Gallichio

Great leadership is often linked to the ability to be flexible and adapt plans to meet the reality of a new challenge or situation.

Periods of chaos or high levels of complexity and uncertainty require a leader that can lean into the change, have a growth mindset, be open to new ideas and learning from others.

A flexible leader, particularly in difficult times and challenging situations, will recognise that they need to listen to and understand their people and their needs, while balancing the need to maintain a realistic level of productivity and performance for the organisation.

Such leaders know that they must flex according to the situation and their people, and that one approach alone won’t work.

The most flexible and successful leaders are able to be agile and work effectively across four key quadrants of leadership.

These four quadrants make up a framework that leaders move between as required, with an approach that will flex to meet the needs at the time.

In simple terms, the framework includes leading to meet the strategic needs of the organisation, as well as wellbeing requirements, the management of operations and performance, and of course capability development.

In managing operational issues, leaders need to make sure that staff understand current operating rhythms and have the ability to deliver on what’s required of them, making sure that people have everything they need to do their job well, and that barriers are removed wherever possible.

Addressing wellbeing and ensuring that there is an environment and culture that strives for both physical and psychosocial safety at the organisational and individual level, will support performance and sustainability.

Actively promoting connection, support, teamwork and realistic flexibility at an individual level is important, whether working remotely or in a workplace.

Providing strategic leadership requires regular clear communication to ensure people understand the key drivers, goals and expectations for the organisation and for them.

Communication that connects them to the organisational goals provides a sense of belonging, meaning purpose and contribution.

In uncertain and changing times it remains important to continue to develop people and organisational capability, supporting people to grow and contribute to the organisation in new ways, as well as their own career.

Our ‘Leading new working conditions‘ webinar helps leaders to explore leadership, while managing and motivating their teams in these uncertain times.