What Keeps You Awake At Night? (Part II)



In Part I, I shared one of the key principles that separates the best leaders from the rest. If you haven’t already, be sure to read that before moving on (click here to read Part 1).


In this article, I dive straight in and answer the questions that wrapped up Part I:

  • How do you begin to operate at this level of “Playing to Win”?

  • How do you apply the principle of stewardship?

For starters, the following three actions will help. Whether you run a FTSE 100 company, Fortune 500 company, are on the Board of a medium-sized business, or own and run a small business, these can apply to you.


1. Recognise that effective leadership begins as an inside job


It’s very easy for senior leaders to become so consumed with addressing the volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity of their external world that they pay very little attention to the VUCA within. This goes way beyond simply incorporating mindfulness and regular exercise into your daily routine but involves doing the hard work of clarifying your values, walking with integrity, cultivating habits that maximise your energy and courage, addressing shadow beliefs, and growing your emotional intelligence. This will help you lead from a place of purpose rather than a place of fear.


2. Stay close to where the action is


Part of the challenge of leadership is that the typical hierarchy in most organisations means that as you develop as a leader, you move further away from the frontline action and often lose touch with the reality of the day-to-day challenges your people and customers actually face. To counter that, make it a habit to regularly visit and talk directly to your customers, walk the floor of your business and have lunch wit