Seven Up Contemplations to Power Leadership

Saturday, January 14, 2012 | comments

When the mind is thinking it is talking to itself.  Plato

Today’s leadership is facing unprecedented challenges than ever, the marketing volatility is the constant; the global competition is the new normal, the multi-generational, multi-cultural  workforce is phenomenal, the “command & control” style leadership is no longer effective and democratic enough to adapt to the change, engage employee and delight customers.

The contemporary leadership need go beyond “M&M”: the half mind and half muscle status quo, should embrace the “CHARM” principle: Character, Heart, Attitude, Resourceful, and Mind.

Here is the seven contemplations help recharge leadership in 21st century.

.1. Positive thinking
The positive thinker sees the invisible, feels the intangible, and achieves the impossible.

Positive thinking & attitude can move the mountain! Both Eastern philosophy and Western religion tell you so.

What is positive thinking? It’s idealistic realism, also the cautious optimism, it helps you conquer the current barriers in order to embrace the brighter future, it creates the energy and synergy in pursuit of the long term vision and growth. Positive thinking is also about value thinking, business leaders with positive thinking will deliver both social value & shareholder value consciously.

2. Critical thinking
If everyone is thinking alike, then somebody isn't thinking.  George S. Patton

Critical thinking presents the character, it is to perceive unique point of view as the thought leader, expands the lens of collective leadership, to see the problems through different angles, and to ‘dispassionately” examine the alternative solutions. 

Critical thinking is even more crucial at the era of information abundance, how to make the right decision at the right time is the collective intelligence; critical thinking is also about anti-popularity thinking, to challenge the conventional culture and wisdom, it’s the process from thinking to learning, learning is always the rebellion, overthrow the old model, and discover the new way to do the things.

3. Creative thinking
The Possible’s slow fuse is lit By the Imagination. ~Emily Dickinson               

Creativity is the ability to create novel value, creative mind is defined as originator; creative thinking needs a problem, and creative leader needs a purpose.  

Contemporary leaders need master the creative thinking to not only find the self purpose, but also the purpose & vision of organization, to create innovative synergy by framing the dynamic working environment, to connect the dots cross silos, to let idea flow, let talent grow, to solve business issue with creativity and agility, and to transform innovation into the business result. 

4. Analytic thinking
 The whole of science is nothing more than a refinement of everyday thinking.
Albert Einstein

If creative thinking is more from heart, then analytic thinking are better from mind. Right-brain creative leadership may instill the vision, passion, left-brain analytic thinking will search for patterns, the quantified information and qualified data, it’s a fact finding and the synthetic process to solve problems scientifically.

Leadership with analytic thinking will make decision via data driven analysis, the objective evaluation and comparison, the progressive pursuit of structured process and solution.
5. Abstract thinking
Let our advance worrying become advance thinking and planning. Winston Churchill

Leadership with abstract thinking has the capability to foresight the future of organization, to zoom in the furthest things closer, it’s also the thinking process to shape the holistic view from silo functions, to abstract wisdom from information, to manage the detailed business issues from architectural, social, philosophical perspective. Be brief, be succinct, be essential!

 6. Situational thinking
The world we have created is a product of our thinking; it cannot be changed without changing our thinking.  ~Albert Einstein

At today’s hyper-competitive, over-complex business environment, the leaders may need play many roles or wear varies of hats through different situations, leadership with situational thinking will help make the fair judgment or the right decision depend on the circumstance, to put it in more logical way, today’s leaders may need always see the both side of coin via multi-dimensional angles for either strategy making or business execution.

7. Collective thinking
I like to think of thoughts as living blossoms borne by the human tree.  ~James Douglas
Last but not least, collective thinking is unbeatable at the era of social computing, crowdsourcing is the attitude, the resource you shouldn’t miss, and the social business is all about the collective effort through the collective thinking to achieve collective performance and share the economic prosperity.

 With Seven Up contemplation,  leadership should go beyond the charisma, with the essential and blended styles such as transformation, democracy & distinction.
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