The Opportunity In A Challenge/Crisis
April 6, 2023
Over the last month, I did a small survey when catching up with friends and ex-colleagues who are today very successful leaders. I asked all of them to relate to me their proudest leadership moment.
A sample of some of the responses went like this.
- When the 2008 global economic crisis hit, the business momentum collapsed. I had to deal with the fallout, provide direction, and keep my team motivated and inspired so that we could recover over two years. Those were really tough days. I was stressed and overworked, but It was a period where I grew as a professional and cemented my leadership credentials.
- I lost my job to a junior member who was the favorite of the CEO. I was bitter and jobless for a few months, but I overcame the negative mindset and connected with an old friend, and we set up this company. We are a 300-people, profitable company today, and I am so glad that the junior took my job.
- I was responsible for the Product launch, but one week before the launch, the Business Head quit, and everything ended up at my doorstep. There was no leadership, and everything was in disarray. Even today, I don’t know how I managed to hold the team together, but it was one of my life’s most challenging and rewarding experiences. It taught me many life and leadership lessons, particularly in dealing with people and crises.
A common theme of that came out from every conversation- When I asked them about their most significant leadership accomplishment, every one of them spoke about how they dealt with adversity and came out shining.
The big leadership lesson is this- A challenge or a crisis is the best catalyst for leadership growth.
Therefore, whenever you struggle to come to terms with the frustrations and stress of a crisis or a challenge, remember that it could be the opportunity (disguised as a challenge) that will propel your leadership development and growth.