7 Requirements for Leading Your Team Through Change (Part 2)

*Be sure to check out Part One of my blog series, “7 Requirements for Leading Your Team Through Change,” by clicking here!


Requirement number two is:

Effective Change Requires a Leader with Credibility.

Image courtesy of thebettermom.com
Image courtesy of thebettermom.com

How trustworthy are you viewed as a leader? It’s an important question that must be addressed before launching change. The credibility of a leader and leadership team plays a major role in effectively leading people through change. Credibility is important in a leader’s life, even in times of stability and status quo, but the dynamics of change heighten its importance. In times of stability and sameness, followers feel a sense of safety and security. In times of change and instability, the feeling of safety and security will be drawn from the leader’s credibility. If the leader or leadership team lacks credibility (perceived or real), the emotional trauma of the change can cause devastation instead of positive change.

What does credibility look like? It is more than a sincere person with a good moral life. People around the world consider a leader admirable and credible if they perceive them to be honest, forward-looking, competent, and inspiring.[1] Most people willingly follow leaders with these qualities. If a leader is perceived weak in one or more of these, their credibility is at risk; and it’s unlikely they will effectively lead followers through change. Good credible leadership practice is a balancing act between two abilities: 1) being authentic enough the people can see and feel the vision of the leaders’ heart, and 2) being confident and competent enough they feel safe to join the change journey with the leader. It’s important to maintain that balance at all times.

What are the next changes you need to lead your team through?

What steps can you take to shore up your own credibility before you start?


[1] James M. Kouzes and Barry Z. Posner, Christian Reflections on the Leadership Challenge, (San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2004), 24-25.

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