We often conflate management and leadership. In times of stability, I think that’s acceptable – the divide between sensitive management and leadership is limited in those conditions.
It changes when things get tough.
Good management is a vital tool, it makes a huge competitive difference when we are in markets with many similar features, products and services. However, it deals largely with what we can see, in the shallows.
Beyond the shallows is deep water. We can’t see there from where we are, We have to go there.
In the shallows, we know pretty much what to look for. The species are catalogued, analysed, understood.
In the deep, it’s different. We still know more about space than we do about our deep oceans. I suspect the same holds true for our business ecosystems. In the deeps lies the relationships between environment, technology, and evolution; and that’s a heady mix. It will change our markets out of all recognition, and faster than we think.
Our plans for the future will have to be based on what we believe, and not just not what we can see. It is the stuff of meaning and purpose.
As leaders, we have to know what that is for us, and act accordingly.