Preparing your business for the future with a transformation mindset

I am not sure if anyone anticipated the change that we are now living in and how quickly it would all happen, Brexit, COVID, and the war in Ukraine brought about change for all of us in our personal and work lives, we didn’t have time to plan we were just thrown in the deep end and survived by just navigating daily. 

For businesses the majority of them are doing the same, just trying to keep on top of the day-to-day and navigate the key challenges of:

  • Supply constraints
  • Staff shortages and a change in how people want to work
  • Preparing for the future has been replaced with surviving in the now. 

All of these factors have led to the word Transformation now having a fear associated with it, people feel it means huge changes, turning things upside down, re-engineering how things are done and it will require time, money and bring with it a hassle at a time where we feel we can’t afford to have any more hassle. 

However, in reality, transformation is a mindset not a project plan to be executed. It’s by having a transformational mindset that we are continually preparing for the future without realising we are! 

So how do you engrain this “Transformational Mindset” into the culture of your organisation?

Firstly, culture starts at the top, it is the responsibility of the leadership team to define and display the attributes of the culture you want to create. Therefore you need to start with your leadership team, you need your leaders to be leading in a transformational direction. 

Let’s take a look at the theory behind the concept of “Transformational Leadership”

Transformational leadership was started by James V. Downton in 1973. He was the first to coin the term. This was later added to by James Burns in 1978. Their definition was:

“Transformational leaders…are those who stimulate and inspire followers to both achieve extraordinary outcomes and, in the process, develop their leadership capacity. Transformational leaders help followers grow and develop into leaders by responding to individual followers’ needs by empowering them and by aligning the objectives and goals of the individual followers, the leader, the group, and the larger organization.”

Fast forward to 1990 and Bernard Bass added even more to the concept he suggested there were four elements to transformational leadership referred to as the “four I’s”:

Idealised Influence

Be clear on your values, authenticity and role modelling are the traits associated with this element. This is about walking the walk and being admired for doing it. 

Inspirational Motivation

Communicate your purpose and vision and commit to it. Create a positive outlook on the future and articulate your message clearly and concisely that can be understood by everyone. 

Intellectual Stimulation

Encourage a growth mindset of your team and have one yourself, reward success, and learn from mistakes. Create an environment that fosters innovation and increased problem-solving. 

Individualized Consideration

Recognise and value the motivations, desires, and needs of individual team members. Show genuine compassion, empathise with the needs of individuals, and encourage ongoing personal growth of individuals

There have been several studies over the years on transformational leadership and these have shown that this style of leadership has increased employees’ work engagement and perceptions of change, subsequently evoking employee behaviour in support of change. The impacts of embracing this leadership style in your organisation will bring positive changes that in turn affect the entire business.

My final point, earlier in this post I mentioned we are living in a time of constant change, the future will continue to bring about changes that we did not anticipate and could not fully plan for. Therefore the best way to prepare your business for the future is to prepare yourself and your teams for handling change.

So my closing question to you is, are you leading in a transformational direction? Is the leadership team to which you are a part of leading in a transformational direction? Are you inspiring your workers to embrace change? Are you fostering a company culture of accountability and ownership? 

If you have answered no then I and the team in LBS can help you, we train and mentor leaders to develop the necessary skills required to be transformational leaders.

Reach out today to get more information on our leadership training programmes and future-proof your business. 

As always guys thanks for reading Lisa Finn, Digital Consultant & Leadership Mentor @LBSpartners. 


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