Autumn is upon us – the time of year when leaves change color and days get shorter. A visible reminder that change is inevitable and can be a beautiful thing; despite the challenges that sometimes accompany a world in constant flux. I know I’m not alone when I share how interruptions due to unrelenting and exponential change in our competitive healthcare field can challenge me from time to time. Like most, developing a mindset to flourish in times of change means continuing to sharpen my tools for success. Exercising discernment within our family of businesses at RX Medical means making sense of uncharted territory and demonstrating how to thrive in times of uncertainty. In an ever-changing business market, how can leaders learn to respond effectively rather than react impulsively?
We’ve all faced uncertainty in business and life, scenarios that leave us feeling unsettled as we pause to consider … “so what now?” When examples pop up and attempt to wreak havoc in our day, I believe it is important to adopt a spirit of curiosity. In other words, we all have the opportunity to reframe these moments and accept them for what they are – chances to create, reflect, and redefine how we respond.
The next time you face a trigger (an unwanted interruption followed by disruptive negative thoughts), take a moment before you react suggests Joan P. Ball who shares leadership ideas for navigating life’s inevitable turning points. Ball invites us to reimagine our relationship with uncertainty in her book, Stop, Ask, Explore: Learn to Navigate Change in Times of Uncertainty. She suggests the below three-step approach to overcoming the challenge of uncertainty.
Overcome Uncertainty: 3 Steps
STOP: If you’re feeling incendiary emotions as a response to a perceived threat – for instance, the possibility of missing a project deadline – stop and acknowledge these emotions. Pause until you feel calm and collected enough to respond to the situation.
ASK: Create a “curiosity loop” by intentionally asking yourself questions that help you reflect on the situation to create space for learning.
EXPLORE: If your line of inquiry leads you to a clear solution, then move forward. If it raises bigger questions, search for ways to explore possible actions or solutions. For example, you might propose a project extension or shift other workplace priorities to create more time to meet priority project deadlines.
Although we’re all tempted at times to impulsively react, consider a slight pause to reflect instead. Challenge yourself to act with integrity and take the time needed to think things through. To manage uncertainty and improve your decision-making, consider changing the focus from knowing to learning.
LEADERSHIP CHALLENGE: Which of the three steps outlined in this post challenge you the most regarding uncertainty?
Brandon Rouse leads a diverse and growing team of professionals well-versed in the challenges facing healthcare today. Headquartered in Oklahoma City, OK, Brandon’s experienced team represents various technological and innovative medical solutions. ZB RX Medical and RX Medical are direct distributors of Zimmer Biomet.