Unplanned change is a reality of business. Behaving constructively and calmly in these situations of surprise and unexpected change is a leadership essential. Reacting to change can sometimes mean experimenting with something you don’t entirely agree with. Here are some ways you can demonstrate flexibility during business upheaval:
1. Listen closely to others’ analysis of the problem and summarize your understanding of their ideas.
2. Encourage others to expand on their ideas, allowing them to develop further and think through various solutions.
3. When asking questions, make sure they are geared toward the success of the idea and not toward shooting holes in it.
4. If an idea has merit, attempt to work with it for a certain period to see if it fixes the problem. When it comes to analyzing your own ideas, check your ego at the door and accept criticism if they have flaws.
5. Whether or not you implement the new idea, be sure to compliment those who were prepared to forward an alternative view. By praising others in this way, you will encourage more of this behavior in the future when something unexpected pops up.
As a manager, you must be somewhat malleable when it comes to your business because change is a reality of any company or organization. Your flexibility will open you up to new points of view that you may not have considered on your own.
West Chester, Pa.
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