Are you flexible like a Willow Tree?

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Are you flexible like a Willow Tree?

How flexible are you when it comes to your schedule, different situations or dealing with people? It’s been said that during a storm with high winds and rain, an oak tree may snap, what about a willow tree? It will bend and sway in the storm, actually making it stronger. So why is flexibility important? In the last three weeks my husband and I had the flu virus (thankfully at different times), my son broke his collarbone snowboarding, my youngest is adjusting to new teachers and a new schedule in middle school causing mini-estrogen flare ups and to top it off……

we are in the midst of planning a wedding celebration in Greensboro this month and a wedding in March for my oldest daughter. Balance, what balance? Sometimes there is no balance and you just have to be flexible and determine the priorities to focus on. This makes me think of leaders and the impact they have on others, the organization and themselves when they are not flexible. These are the ones who are set in their ways and being open to new ideas is not an option. It’s my way or the highway. Do you have people like that in your organization? Leaders who listen to others and show a willingness to embrace new ways of thinking create an environment where people feel energized and engaged. Flexible leaders realize their ideas matter and they matter as people.

A Chief Nursing Officer of a hospital held a mandatory meeting of the nursing directors and managers and gave them a few hours to come up with as many ideas as possible to reduce expenses. At the time, patient census had been low for several months and with increasing costs, decreasing reimbursements, the cuts had to come from somewhere. The nurses reconvened and shared their ideas, they were excited about the brainstorming session and offered strategies for change that were desperately needed for a long time in the organization, a really long time…. What was the response of the CNO? She basically told her people that none of their ideas would work. How did that impact morale? Not so good. What would you do if you came up with all these great ideas to improve your workplace, reduce turnover, improve customer service, and then your leader said “None of your ideas will work.” Would you keep coming up with ideas or would you give up? Leaders who want to be a catalyst for change need to be flexible. Where do you need to be flexible like the willow tree?

February 9th, 2015|