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What is adaptive leadership?



Adaptive leadership is a leadership approach that emphasises adapting your leadership style to fit the specific people and situation you are leading. Rather than following a single leadership style, adaptive leaders are flexible and able to modify their approach based on the needs of their team and the challenges they face. 


One of the main reasons adaptive leadership is important is that it allows organisations to effectively handle change. The world is changing at a rapid pace, and leaders need to be able to adapt and modify their strategies to changing circumstances. Rigid, inflexible leadership will not be able to respond appropriately to new challenges and opportunities. Adaptive leaders can pivot their approach when needed to steer their teams through times of uncertainty and transformation.


We’ve found organisations with these types of leaders tend to achieve better results. Their teams feel empowered and radiate creativity to also try new approaches. This innovative problem-solving leads to continual improvement and better outcomes.


Maintaining an open and inquisitive mindset is essential. They are willing to consider new perspectives and challenge preconceived notions about what approaches will or won't work. An open mindset allows leaders to recognize when a situation requires modifying their typical leadership behaviours and trying a different strategy.


Understanding the importance of adaptability and fostering an adaptive mindset in the not-for-profit are essential steps for leaders seeking to thrive in today's ever-evolving environment. What strategies do you employ to cultivate adaptability in your leadership approach? Share your thoughts and experiences!


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