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Weigh Anchor, Ride Out The STORM
Rudy Karsan (Chairman and CEO, Kenexa) discusses how running an organisation, whether large or small, can be compared to steering a ship
 
Someone once said, “We can’t control the wind, but we have the power to adjust the sails.” There are many advantages of knowing when to let go of control. It frees you from trying in vain to solve problems that have no solutions, so you can focus on what is retrievable from the chaos. You need to recognise that sometimes it makes better sense to just let go.

Leadership provides guidance and direction. Today’s leaders require navigation skills to maintain a balance between the skills of their team members, harnessing the strengths of each. They should also be able to gauge when they need to step back and let someone else take the lead and when to assume control again. When the ground under the company is shifting, they need to bring in changes for the better, which might involve a new way of thinking about a particular situation or direction in which to take the company. In tough times, they should be able to return to the basics, the core values of the company, to lie low if necessary, and watch out for new breakthroughs that will take the organisation in a positive direction. How do you identify when to navigate and when to control? Well, you need the right cocktail of intuition, preparedness, and humility, which comes from experience, introspection and analysis - learning from previous mistakes.

A successful organisation is one where the leader is effective and so are the employees. An employee with the requisite skills can help the leader navigate by pitching in and being proactive. The employee should be sensitive to the leader’s reactions while doing this. When matters take an unexpected turn for the organisation, employees should help look for solutions, and work with the leader to chart out the way to work around the problem and plot a new course. This could make all the difference between sink or swim.

Thus, control is good; it is essential, but often, letting go of total control and sensibly navigating is the need of the hour. As a leader, you will be effective only if you know how to tread the fine line between the two.
 
          
 
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