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Anthony M. Drago of GPS Lifestyle: Five Things You Need To Be A Highly Effective Leader During Turbulent Times

First and foremost, take some “ME” time by being an early riser, doing some form of exercise and practicing gratitude. I know this might not seem to fit into the traditional idea of a successful leadership strategy, however, if you give it a try, I can promise you, you will feel and see a difference in every aspect of your life.

  1. The next thing you can do to lead effectively during turbulent times is to lead yourself. How can you lead others if you cannot lead yourself? A perfect example would be when I was training players in speed, agility, and quickness. If I couldn’t perform the exercises I was teaching, how would they learn the proper way to perform them? You need to be able to perform the tasks you are asking others to do, or they will not take you seriously. Walk it like you talk it.
  2. Next up would be transparency. I go back to transparency because it is imperative to any successful organization. If everyone knows the challenges the organization is facing, it makes it easier to find a solution. An example of transparency from my experience would be when I was the Assistant General Manager and Head of Strength and Conditioning for an ABA Professional basketball franchise. Unfortunately, this was the exact opposite of transparency, but it drives home the point. I did so much for the franchise from marketing to coaching but in the end the organization folded because there was not an inkling of leadership from ownership. They never shared the true challenges that they were facing so the entire organization, from the players to the coaches, were blindsided when then team folded. However, I wasn’t, as I saw the writing on the walls. Be transparent with your team. It will prove invaluable when times get rough.
  3. Do the opposite of what everyone else is doing. While most people (aka leaders) seem shrink and hide in the face of adversity, being available to your people and truly listening to what they have to say is paramount. Again, it comes back to people doing business or even working with people they like and trust. While I am not a fan of the watching the news (99.9% is negative) I do believe it is imperative to keep up with what is going on in your industry. The reason being is that if you see the problems affecting your organization, you can take the opposite action to combat it. Many times, if something you are attempting is not working, do the exact opposite and you will find success.
  4. Lastly, is a three-prong approach I learned during my enlistment in The United States Coast Guard. You must Improvise, Adapt, and Overcome. The one constant in this world is change. Things will never go the way you expect, so get used to it. So, when things go wrong, as they most certainly will, you must improvise and change directions to get your organization back on track. Once you are back on track, you must adapt to the changes without losing focus on what your goals are. If you manage to stay on course (this is where most people falter), then you will Overcome all obstacles in your way. I am not saying it is easy, if it were, everyone would be a successful leader. However, if you can manage to keep your poise under turbulent times and be the example, your organization will be leaps and bounds ahead of the competition.

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