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5 questions to elevate your leadership today

We’re all leading during challenging times these days, so why not shift from survival mode to conscious leadership?
March 23, 2021

By Sarah Elliott, CPA

Most of us are facing unprecedented challenges these days as we adjust to a new normal. We’re working remotely, homeschooling our children, keeping up with recent legislation, supporting our clients … all while navigating fear during these uncertain times.

The combination of all these things may be enough to paralyze you. I understand. Sometimes, I feel stuck, too. It’s part of being human.

These challenging times also present a unique opportunity to elevate your leadership capacity. It’s an opportunity to shift from the default setting of survival mode and expand into conscious leadership.

Instead of immediately reacting to a situation (or avoiding it), tap into the power of the pause. Pause, and ask yourself a question. By bringing more intention to your thoughts, words and actions, you expand your leadership capacity exponentially!

What powerful questions could you ask yourself? Here are five ideas to get you started:

  1. Where do I need to extend grace to myself or others? Put the human first in all your interactions. We are all struggling right now in different ways. It’s impossible to truly know what another person is going through. And it’s probably difficult to discern what you’re struggling with yourself, as it shifts moment by moment. Seek out opportunities to connect, understand and support.
  2. Where can I focus my energy today to contribute to a positive outcome? Take it day by day, moment by moment. It’s easy to get stuck, worrying about things you can’t control. Instead, focus your energy on the things you can positively influence. Ask yourself, “What’s one simple, positive action I can take right now?”
  3. How do I want to show up as a leader? How do you want others to remember you during this time? Others are looking to you — how you show up, what you say, what you do and how you make them feel. They take their cues from you. How you show up matters more than you know.
  4. What can I learn from this experience? There is power in struggle. In fact, we can experience our greatest growth during the most challenging times. What nuggets of wisdom can you glean from these challenges to elevate your leadership?
  5. What do I need to support myself? A strong leader is a healthy leader. You must maintain your health and well-being to keep a clear head and open heart. Create selfcare routines. Tap into your support network. Ask for help when you need it. (Psst…We’re here to support you, too!) 

What future could you create by tapping into the power of the pause to elevate your leadership?

Sarah Elliott, PCC, CPA, co-founded Intend2Lead, a leadership development company that coaches accountants to access the #DimensionOfPossible, with VSCPA member Brian Kush, CPA, in 2016.

Intend2Lead is a partner with the VSCPA Center for Innovation, offering leadership coaching, consulting, group learning, the I2L Peak Performance Challenge and more. Find their offerings at intend2lead.com.