“So, first of all, let me assert my firm belief that the only thing we have to fear is fear itself… which paralyses needed efforts to convert retreat into advance.” Franklin D Roosevelt
The words of Franklin D Roosevelt in his inaugural address to Depression-era Americans should resonate with the leaders of 21st century professional services firms as we enter unchartered economic waters. However, the work of social psychologists tells us that what really paralyses people is not simply fear but rather the presence of fear without any action plan to reduce it. The “rabbits in headlights” syndrome!
What are the implications for business leaders and how should they respond to ensure that their firms and their people are fit for whatever the future might bring? This is a time for leadership, clarity of direction and tenacity of purpose. There should be an increased emphasis on the four core areas of analysis, decision making, communication and action rather than the beating of a hasty retreat behind the closed doors of the boardroom. Aspects of each of these central competencies are the focus of this issue of HedsUP! which I hope you will find interesting.