The leader’s challenge is to navigate her world with both consistency and agility.
Consistency gives the team a stable base. It gives them something to look back to when things get hard – it’s a lighthouse, or a permanent landmark. Consistency builds trust.
Consistency is important to:
- the pursuit of a long-term vision and the impact you want to have on the market
- the visibility of core values in your life and work
- communication and setting expectations for teams
- achieving plans and strategies (short to mid-term patience and persistence)
Within a consistent set of values and core principles you can and should be agile with nearly everything else. Your customers’ needs change. The market changes. Your competition changes. The makeup of your team changes.
Agility is important to:
- determining the products and services your customers need and want
- solving problems for your customers and your organization
- hiring, training and motivating a team
- the gifts you give and the way in which you give them
In a strange way, you can be more consistent over the long term when you are agile in the short term.
Just beware of the extremes.
Too consistent (rigid) and you miss opportunities and teach your team narrow thinking and conformity.
Too agile (opportunistic) and you seem fickle, untrustworthy, are hard to work with and are teaching your team to not follow through.