Take a breath – the first habit towards Embracing Ambiguity in 2017

Like everyone else the team at Change2020 are having a final push towards the end of the year with some huge deliverables and lots of productive discussions.  It’s a time when the forthcoming break feels like a huge milestone, and I often think that this is because it’s the one holiday when we tend to truly relax and aim to do very little (after all that shopping and cooking, of course)!  Just some time to pause, reflect and reset.  As we look back on the development of our business over the past 12 months, it is with a sense of purpose and pride – at what has been accomplished and what is propelling us ahead on our very exciting journey.  Yes, this year Change2020 has taken on new paths and grown in a business sense, but really it has been the story of our ‘growing up’ as an organisation and the forging of an exciting agenda built around Embrace Ambiguity.

Not only the vision for Change2020, Embrace Ambiguity will take on an even stronger meaning in 2017 as we look forward to the findings of our research with the Queensland University of Technology.  Many of you will have come along to, or read about, our breakfast sessions this year; perhaps you have completed the Tolerance of Ambiguity questionnaire.  At the core of this work is the nine habits we believe leaders’ need to adopt in order to increase their tolerance for ambiguity and remain relevant in light of the unprecedented change taking place in organisations. Ultimately it is our habits and behaviours as leaders that will provide the inspiration and dedication to generate real change in organisations; the future state we are looking to build is very much unchartered territory given the range of factors influencing strategic agendas. So providing the academic rigour to support these habits is a huge agenda for us in 2017 and we look forward to bringing you the results of the study.

On a slightly simpler note, however, a key message from all of us is that this is a time to focus on the first habit towards embracing ambiguity: take a breath.  Right across our client base there is an intensity, a pace of change, that is desired in order to generate a range of outcomes and provide platforms for growth, sustainability and commercial performance. Clearly this is essential, but in our observation this intensity of competing agendas slows down change and it’s a case of too much, too fast and not enough time to just stop and think about what is actually being done.  So readers now is the time to stop and wind down in order to step back and appreciate the things that have been achieved, so that you see clearly what lies ahead, the opportunities and the potential challenges.

On a personal note too it’s time to take a breath and enjoy life for what it is – we are lucky to be alive and to be living in a great country, despite all of the events of 2016 that have shaken us up.  So take a breath for you too.  Change is not an easy journey, but it is the right one, and we are all change leaders at heart.  Pause, reflect and reset. Embrace the ambiguity that is everywhere, look after yourself and have a wonderful festive season with your family and friends.

See you in 2017, from everyone at the Change2020 team.

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