“Why would you want to do that?”
Most won’t understand a leader’s desire to disrupt a comfortable situation. Followers enjoy comfort because that is what they work for. But not leaders. We love disruption. We love the challenge and the competition. We love the sense of creating and becoming, of cashing in on being first and making the significant difference. We also hate following and know that getting too comfortable is a critical error, one that usually turns a leader into a follower. Being too comfortable simply isn’t smart, logical or strategic so those of us who are committed to leading don’t get too comfortable. .
Don’t get me wrong, we all like a little comfort. We like to enjoy a win and take the edge off just a bit. We get that. But when we get so comfortable that we are no longer compelled to staying on the cutting edge, that is when the problems start and too soon we are falling behind. It usually happens when we extend a moment of success into a slumber that feels soooo good but leaves us lazy, lethargic and left behind. No leader wants that. But it gets worse. When we relax too much and then fall behind, we tend to PANIC when we do wake up. In that PANIC we react rather than plan ahead, we let emotion override logic and problems become a leader’s nightmare. We definitely don’t want that.
So what do we do? The job of a leader is to constantly look ahead, anticipate problems and solve them beforehand. Here are five compelling reasons to stay on that cutting edge, developing a habit of disruption even when we would like to relax and be a little more comfortable.
1. Change is Constant, Stability is Temporary
Once we reach a certain level of success, often we wrongly assume that the good times will last. But we know that is not the case. If we are not in a mindset of constant change, we will likely let up, relax and slow down. That is when the problems start. Stay on cutting edge, make change the constant.
2. We Cannot Stop Natural Attrition
Things are constantly ending and need to be replaced. That is simply a law of nature. Clients leave for a variety of reasons and if we get too comfortable, we quickly see our progress slowing as well. Change happens consistently. We might as well get used to living with this law of nature.
3. Comfortable Quickly Becomes Complacency
When we are hungry, we tend to work harder. But when we have a little success and things are a little easier, we like to reward ourselves and relax a bit. That is the critical point. Unless we keep that consistent drive alive, we can become content to sit back and live with the limited success we just achieved. Don’t become complacent with the status quo.
4. Comfortable Changes our Focus
Disruptive leaders are actively looking to do what has never been done before, at least in their own industry, community or business. But with even a little comfort, we change our focus from disrupting to maintaining. We cease playing offense and decide to defend, no longer playing to win but simply trying not to lose. That usually doesn’t turn out too well. Always play to win.
5. First Choice is Best
Let’s be honest, the first to sense and seize an opportunity usually enjoys a big advantage. Gotta love that because it sure beats leftovers. As leaders, we live for the best opportunities so why would we ever want to start at a disadvantage? Set your strategy to be the first to disrupt.
3D PWR Tip: Strategically Develop the Habit of Disruption
(c) 2015 Murfield International, Inc.
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Dr. Loren Murfield works with aspiring and emerging leaders so they can leverage their power to do what followers and critics think is impossible. This often involves working with them to develop their disruptive ideas and write their stories of rapid and radical change. How could you leverage your leadership power by sharing your story of disruption? Contact Dr. Murfield today.
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