What's your agility ability?
Yet, for decades, other industries have experienced this same type of volatility and still flourished. For us in healthcare, the challenge isn't solely change, but also our way of thinking. It's a new leadership mentality that welcomes change, sees possibility, embraces the potential for outstanding outcomes, and isn't afraid to be uncomfortable while achieving these outcomes—an AGILE Leader mindset.
First used in the 1990s regarding manufacturing and customer demand, the concept of agility became wildly successful in software companies looking to bring products and services to market more quickly, efficiently, and successfully. Steve Jobs at Apple is a prime example of paving the way for improvement before customers even knew they wanted it. That's the attitude of an AGILE Leader: the ability to anticipate the need for change and take effective action in conditions never before witnessed. Not surprisingly, leadership agility is the most desired trait of 130 interviewed CEOs.1
According to new research from the Center for Creative Leadership and Columbia University, truly AGILE Leaders face each day with an open mindset, coupled with a collection of specific leadership actions.2 These actions and behaviors include challenging assumptions, practicing self-reflection, and taking risks while remaining calm in the face of difficulty. This combination allows a leader to continually develop personally, and use new effective strategies professionally to navigate the ever-increasing complexities we face daily in every healthcare organization.
The goal of every healthcare organization should be to have AGILE Leaders who are visionaries—individuals who can lead transformative change at every level. An AGILE Leader commits to self-development; builds high-performance teams and strategic partnerships throughout the organization; and constantly strives to develop creative, high-leverage, high-impact solutions—all while continuing to deliver sustainable positive outcomes.