No matter how dark the situation, the struggle to overcome difficulty shapes us. When we become conscious of the possibilities offered by adversity, we can draw on it as a resource to hone ourselves and develop our potential. Just like the lotus, beauty, growth, and life can come from the darkest of places.
A good leader needs to balance optimism and confidence about the future with honesty about the challenges that lay in the path ahead. When things are tough, and there is no clear path forward, tell your team the truth. Even when you are unsure, tell them you don’t know. but that you are confident you can and will figure it out together. Real strength comes from identifying challenges, sharing your thoughts as they evolve, and inviting the team in to think through the challenges with you.
Organizations that value creativity and problem solving don’t divide themselves into leaders and followers. Everyone has the aptitude, ability, and responsibility to lead. And everyone is accountable for marshaling the organization’s resources and helping to make decisions that move our causes forward. The best way through a crisis is to empower everyone to identify where they can make a difference.