Having reflected on your leadership style, what you admire in other leaders and potential self-imposed limits, it is time to build a vision for your leadership.
Q: What are my leadership aspirations?
Q: Who do I see myself evolving into as a leader?
Q: What gaps exist between how I lead today and the leader I aspire to be?
Remember to revisit these questions regularly as your leadership style evolves.
Tom’s Reflections on These Questions
These are tricky questions because it can be challenging to really tie down our “aspirations”. It sorts of depends which part of our personality is answering. The ambitious voice might be saying “I could lead any organisation” whilst other voices might be asking “Right. But at what cost?“
How then do you tie down your aspiration?
For me, it comes back to energy and passion.
- What energises you?
- What gives you purpose and joy?
- What organisations would you effectively lead for free (if you had countless millions in the bank)?
You see an increasing number of CEOs in large organisations still working in their 70s and 80s, or over 90 in Warren Buffet’s case. They are clearly not in it for the money. They may still hanker the status that comes with the job but ultimately their roles define them.
- What about you?
- Where do you see yourself in your mid-80s?
- When you imagine riding off into the sunset?
- Who would you like to have become by then?
- What can you do today to live into that?
The Curious Leaders programme is designed to foster a deep sense of curiosity about who you are as a person and as a leader. It challenges you to reflect on what you can do each day to become a more effective leader. The premise is that before we can truly lead others, we first need to lead ourselves.
It thus ultimately starts with self-leadership. This is about building a practice of reflection and action whereby we become increasingly curious about how our thinking is impacting our actions. This is the first step in building a world in which curiosity shapes leadership.
In this world, leaders aren’t boxed in by traditional thinking or established playbooks. They are open to fresh ideas and diverse perspectives, fostering a culture of exploration and learning. In truth, nurturing curiosity in leadership is essential if we are to address the key challenges of the 21st century.