Leadership and Innovation 2024
Online Conference

Rebel Leadership: How to Thrive in Uncertain Times

Larry Robertson, Leadership and Innovation 2023 Presenter

Larry Robertson

Innovation Strategy Advisor, Lighthouse Consulting

About the Presentation

“It’ll be over soon.” “If we can just get to a new normal.” Disproportionately, these remain the most common refrains of leaders today. They reflect a stubborn belief that leadership is about getting through and getting back – back to some kind of normal, new or old, back to a state of status quo, back to leadership of old. Trouble is, this doesn’t reflect our new reality. We live and lead in a world more volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous than ever before – not temporarily, but perpetually. This is our new abnormal. Experts agree: Leadership must fit the situation to be effective. That means leadership as we once knew it must change. To succeed, it must change and embrace rebel leadership.

Rebel leadership is a new term that relies equally on its parts. Taken alone, “to rebel” means going against the norm, being open, innovating, and adapting. Trouble is, we tend to think of these as isolated acts – isolated to a situation or an individual. Similarly, we see “leadership” simply as compelling others to follow, and as one individual ideating, guiding, and solving. Right now, neither is enough. We need the ability to adapt and innovate not just now and then, but perpetually. We need to lead culturally, not heroically. We need rebel leadership. For two decades, the most successful organizations have proven it works. Regardless of sector, the patterns are clear, the lessons accessible, and the power of rebel leadership proven. It’s time to change. Here’s how.

Key Takeaways

  1. Our views of leaders and leadership are synonymous. They shouldn’t be. Your success and your organization’s depend on changing your view.
  2. Purpose is powerful, but alone is not enough. Laugh all you want, but it turns out soul matters most.
  3. Of all the vital strategic assets leaders have, the most important is the one the majority squander. Three things explain why it works or fails.
  4. Shifting to a rebel leadership mindset isn’t as hard leaders might think. Letting go of an outdated view of leadership might be. A simple tool helps enormously.

About Larry Robertson

Larry Robertson is an innovation and strategy advisor helping organizations and their leaders discover value at the nexus of leadership, entrepreneurship, and creativity. A Fulbright Scholar, he’s the internationally-acclaimed author of 3 award-winning books: Rebel Leadership, The Language of Man and A Deliberate Pause. He’s also a popular columnist with Inc. Magazine, The Creativity Post, CEO World Magazine, SmartBrief, Fast Company, and other publications.

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