We are living through a time of unprecedented global change. Like it or not, huge changes are taking place in politics, the economy, technology, society, and the environment:
Covid-19, Brexit, America First, Belt and Road, Gilets Jaunes, austerity, the rise of the political right and left, fake news (lies disguised as truth), migration, terrorism… smartphones, drones, artificial intelligence, driverless vehicles, electric vehicles, the Internet of things, Airbnb, Uber, Tesla, Amazon, low economic growth, stock market volatility, storms, floods, droughts, fires, earthquakes, new diseases (of plants, animals, and humans), climate change, Extinction Rebellion, and the ongoing degradation of the planetary life support system we call ‘the environment’…
These are just some of the changes that are happening in this time of Churning. Ten years ago almost all them were barely on our radars. Now they are the new normal. Although there will be many items on this list that you do not care about, there is probably at least one item that is affecting you significantly.
We can’t predict exactly what is going to happen, where, or when. But we can be certain that the world is becoming more complex and unpredictable — not less. Over the next 12 months the amount of change is set to increase, not decrease.
This puts pressure on us all. And the people around us all have their pressures too: customers, suppliers, colleagues, friends, and family. And when two pressured people meet it is no surprise if stressed communications lead to poor decisions and make a bad situation worse. In this way the Churning feeds on itself and grows.
This Churning won’t last forever — it is a transitional phase to something better, as you will understand by the time you have finished this book.
But to reach that point successfully, and to deal with the changes we will experience along the way, we need new frameworks and new tools for leading ourselves and others through change.
This is Inner Leadership. This is learning to use change to become stronger.
Is the rate of change in your life today higher, lower, or the same as it was five years ago? Over the next 12 months, do you expect that rate of change to decrease or increase? Would it be useful to start learning now, ways lead yourself and others better through this time of increased change?
Adapted from Inner Leadership: a framework and tools for building inspiration in times of change.
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