Leadership in the time of VUCA — Four Pillars for Change and Innovation Leaders

philip horváth
Mar 30, 2016 · 7 min read

So how do you lead in times of Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity and Ambiguity?

How can you keep up with the rate of change when you are at the helm of a large organization and you are tasked with bringing innovation to your company?

The organization of the future will have to deal with all four dynamics: volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity.

Volatility — Everything is moving fast.

Uncertainty — Nobody really knows what the future will look like.

Especially when collectively created, visionary narratives allow individuals to see an aspirational version of themselves: who they could become.

Complexity — We have introduced more points of origin of change.

Ambiguity — How do we even know if we succeeded?

Progress indicators give us the confidence that we are moving toward our vision and are executing toward our purpose, our timeless legacy.

Today’s success is tomorrow’s failure

Ultimately, confidence is a choice, but in a world of VUCA to know that you are on purpose in your actions, that you are inspired in community by a powerful vision and narratives that evoke that vision, that a clear portfolio is guiding the trajectory of your actions, and that you are seeking and receiving meaningful feedback about your progress — is priceless.


Leading Change & Curating Compassion by shapingwork

The shapingwork academy offers a complete new approach to education pairing Practical Philosophy with the “best-of-breed” Leadership, Management and Execution. We bring people together that seek to create and learn based on inspiration and admiration. Join us!

Thanks to Tirza Hollenhorst.

philip horváth

Written by

culture catalyst ★ planetary strategist — supporting leaders with operating systems at planetary scale — tweeting on future and culture @philiphorvath

Leading Change & Curating Compassion by shapingwork

The shapingwork academy offers a complete new approach to education pairing Practical Philosophy with the “best-of-breed” Leadership, Management and Execution. We bring people together that seek to create and learn based on inspiration and admiration. Join us!