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Be Flexible

This is SO much easier said than done. It’s also easy to say when things are going your way; however, when things don’t go your way, it’s easy to get stressed and overwhelmed.  However, in order to maintain your sanity and positive working relationships with others, it is best to be flexible.  Join me this week as I highlight 3 reasons why it’s important to be flexible when working with teams, nonprofits and coalitions.

  1. Life happens. To all of us.  Just this week, my two year old daughter got sick, then her caregiver got sick and we found out some very sad news.  I had big plans to work on major projects and accomplish lots of things, but that didn’t happen. I HAD to be flexible with myself and hopeful that others would be flexible and gracious with me. As I reflected on this, I am reminded that life happens to everyone. Just as I needed some extra kindness and grace this week, others may also need that same grace and kindness next week.  As we work with others, we never know what is happening in their lives. Once again, Stephen Covey’s wisdom is true – Seek first to understand, then be understood.
  2. Fosters innovation.  When we are flexible, we provide room for innovation and solutions to complex challenges. Flexibility allows us to recognize there may be other ways to do what we are doing and that there may be things we didn’t initially see or understand that will impact how we move forward.  Flexibility allows us to recognize that we may not have all the answers and see the value in one another’s contributions which can lead to meaningful results!
  3. Brings out the best in others.  When we work with teams, nonprofits and coalitions, flexibility allows us to listen and to leave room for others ideas and contributions. When we are flexible (rather than rigid and only focused on our agenda), we can facilitate positive and productive conversations that allow others to contribute their best to the conversation. By demonstrating flexibility, you are demonstrating that you are open to the thoughts, ideas and contributions of others and you are creating a safe space for them to openly share. When we bring out the best in others individually, we bring out the best in our teams, nonprofits and coalitions collectively!

As you reflect on being flexible this week, what are you going to do to show flexibility in your team, nonprofit or coalition?

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