Most leaders I work with want to be challenged regularly – to be forced out of their comfort zone (this is one of the key distinctions between great managers – equally important of course – and great leaders).The single quickest and most effective way to get out of your comfort zone? Drop your security blanket, at least for a while. And believe me, we all, even the greatest leaders – have a blankie, sometimes several.
In my experience the most obvious and all-encompassing blankie comes in the form of a favored type of communication. Every leader worth their salt has a professed, preferred, communication method – ‘phone, email, powerpoint, IM, Twitter, face-to-face, 1-pagers, ‘through my assistant’, lunch, monolog, dialog, semaphore – whatever. We all – every one of us – cling to a favored way of communicating.
So try this – leave the bluetooth in the drawer. Step away from the computer. Stop the corridor talk – whatever your favored communication process is – just drop it, even for a day. I guarantee you’ll be out of your comfort zone and discovering new things within hours.
Let’s see how long you can last out there