It is always easy to look backwards and see how a business has evolved to where it is today, than to look at where a business is today and predict where it will go in the future. Looking backwards from essence of an idea, to the formative stage in which it was created and how it has evolved to where it is now, journeys look logical and rationale. When leaders look at their business, the rational behind the direction setting they took seems obvious today and makes perfect sense, but the truth is that at the time of making those vital decisions it was not.  

Making decisions about the future is never easy and certainly not simple. The lack of information about the future, the uncertainty of what will happen within any sector and the singularity of ownership of the big decision weight on leaders minds often leads to procrastination and delay.

Seeing beyond the horizon, to what the world will look like in three to five years time requires leaders to look beyond today's certainty over the horizon into uncertainty if they wish to succeed. What makes some leaders succeed in moving beyond the known is not just having an idea, but to create sustain and drive towards their passion. Being willing and able to think beyond the known an visible to see a world which does not yet exist.

I am sure you have seen the list of six famous failures, from Albert Einstein to the Beatles. All of whom ended up succeeding, but at the time of their big decisions they were unknown, from Walt Disney who was fired from newspaper for "lacking imagination" or Oprah Winfrey who was demoted from being a news anchor because she "wasn't fit for television".  If they had listened to only those voices where would they be today. Would the Beatles have bounced back from Decca records, would Steve Jobs have fought back to success having been fired from his own company by the man he hired, had they not had the determination, advice and courage to make tough decisions about the unknown future.    

Michael Jordan, Albert Einstein, Walt Disney, Steve Jobs,

There is a simple phrase which I often use when talking with directors as a mentor, "What's your Vision" and within that simple three word question I am asking a whole series of questions about the leadership I am talking with. Who are they, where are they going and most importantly of all why do they think they are right?

Here are five business tips to help leaders move beyond the certainty of their role.

Five Business Tips for Moving Beyond Certainty

1. Create your Vision!  (Define your destination, goal or dream which you believe you can deliver)

2. Collect people to believe in you and your passion and abilities. (Successful leaders surround themselves with people who believe in them, challenge them and keep them on the ground throughout their journey)

3. Keep being curious and challenge the status quo. (Its Not why, but why not?  Success as a leader is always about challenging, to see new and emerging opportunities).

4. Stretch the limits and push beyond your comfort zone. (If you believe in something you must push beyond the known to open up new possibilities, you can only do this if you stretch yourself)

5. Keep researching your vision (Leaders too often create a vision and then stop developing, stop redefining and stop seeing how the market is changing until their vision fails)

These five #businesstips will help leaders see and move beyond the certainty of what they can see in business and develop the #mindset and #robustness as a leader. Leadership is not a natural gift, its takes time and continual investment in development and redeveloping your skills to face and succeed in leading people to face new challenges beyond the certainty of what already exists.


Richard Gourlay