See Beyond the Horizon
The great explorers show us that true leaders look beyond what is known, imagine new worlds, and inspire others to join their voyage of discovery.
WRITTEN BY: ADAM DANYAL
Great leaders are visionaries. Like explorers scanning the seas, they look beyond the horizon and imagine new worlds. This takes courage. It's easier to stay anchored in the safe harbor of what we know. But true leaders set their sights on distant shores of possibility.
Consider Magellan, who saw a route to the Spice Islands when his peers only saw stormy seas. Or the Wright Brothers, who envisioned human flight while others scoffed and called it fanciful. These bold pioneers expanded humanity's horizons. As leaders, we must do the same.
Look at Blockbuster, who saw only brick-and-mortar stores while Netflix envisioned online streaming. Or Kodak, who thought film would last forever as digital photography emerged. When leaders cling to the status quo, they run aground. We must scan the seas of change and set our course toward new horizons.
How do we see beyond the horizon? Focus less on daily tasks and more on the forces shaping our industry. Make time for learning and reflection. Question assumptions. And surround yourself with positive, creative people who expand your thinking.
Also, listen to outsider voices and dissenting views. Don't just talk with those who reinforce the horizon you see. Disruptive ideas come from unexpected places. Seek them out.
Expand your vision. Sail toward the unknown. Don't just gaze at the horizon, change it. When we lead with boldness and vision, we inspire others to join the voyage. Together, we can discover new worlds. The horizon keeps receding. Our work is never done.
From our Leadership Bookshelf:
WRITTEN BY: JULIA DANYAL
Visionary leaders can see possibilities beyond the horizon. As John P. Kotter discusses in “Leading Change”, great leaders envision an inspiring future, strategically chart a course toward it, and enlist others in the journey. But execution matters too.
Here are 5 insights from Kotter's book:
Great leaders anchor change in a compelling vision of the future. This vision motivates people to see beyond hurdles.
Visions must be grounded in reality. Leaders must candidly assess the present before charting the future.
Communication is vital. The vision must be conveyed widely through words and deeds.
Don't underestimate obstacles. Resistance is natural. Persistence despite barriers is key.
Success requires empowering others to act. Visions become a reality when people are enabled to drive change.
In summary, Kotter provides a practical blueprint for leading change by starting with a vision beyond the horizon. But he underscores execution matters too - confronting obstacles, enlisting others, translating the vision into action. It starts with leaders who imagine what's possible and inspire others to join them in turning imagination into reality. That ability to see and seize new frontiers is the essence of great leadership.