The Core Dilemmas

These two conditions set up contradictory needs that can make the exercise of power remarkably difficult. To respond rapidly, leaders must be decisive, and sometimes bold. Competing on speed[12] requires the willingness to move mountains if necessary. They have to be able to cut through organizational resistance and routine to dramatically shift course, or to make early bets before all the data are—or can be—in.

The danger with this kind of forcefulness, however, is that it may well kill the kind of upward information flow needed to make smart decisions in a complex changing world. Overriding opposition, or not even giving it a chance to be heard, can easily send the message that initiative is not welcome, pushback is dangerous, ...

Get Organization 21C: Someday All Organizations Will Lead This Way now with O’Reilly online learning.

O’Reilly members experience live online training, plus books, videos, and digital content from 200+ publishers.