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  • Lars Nordenlund

Five Core Leadership Principles To Make A Difference

Updated: Jan 8, 2021



This time of uncertainty and economic downturn is requiring the best of most leaders experience and leadership principles to survive and thrive again. I appreciate and understand that many leaders are concerned if their current strategy, leadership team and own capabilities are sufficient to manage through the pandemic.


Radical change also drives some degrees of insecurity and disbelief - but now is not the time to slow down or abandon the core principles of leadership that you know can make a difference. On the contrary, now is the time to double down on the values and integrity you know if working to change strategy and motivating the team to follow thought with the change to a better position than you came from.


Here Are The 5 Core Leadership Principles I Follow and Why:

  1. Envision the future. It’s fair to say it’s hard to predict the future despite attempts to correlate historic events with future results. Looking backwards gives you some indication of potential future outcomes, but for a business I still think the best way to prepare for the future is to create it yourself and drive breakthrough innovation to shape the future in your own scenario planning. The power of this approach is the discipline that forces us to explore uncharted territory. You must bypass market uncertainty, believe in yourself more than a perceived reality, and try to manage your own cognitive biases –which often foil these attempts to take the long view

  2. Lead by Core Values. Trust, integrity and honesty are imperative to successful relationships and businesses. Ensure that your leadership is transparent, truthful and operates on a high-level of integrity. I’ve had situations where people haven’t been upfront or have omitted partial truths about a position or a company at least a couple of times. Once I was lured to a high level CEO position, moved my family out of the country, and the company quickly ended up on the edge of bankruptcy and sold off. I have also hired and engaged people that I thought had shared values and later came to learn their values did not actually align with what they expressed early on, which led to a disappointing, unhealthy environment that I did not want in my workplace.

  3. Don’t compromise on hiring the best team. If you are scaling an organization in a fast-growing company, it is tempting to recruit a talented person who doesn’t quite fit. Don’t do it. If someone doesn’t feel right or doesn’t fit your value set keep looking until you find the perfect fit. A short-term solution at the expense of long-term objectives can do more harm than good. It’s critical to engage in a high degree of vetting and to develop networks that allow for fostering connections prior to hiring. When I haven’t done that with executive teams I’ve hired, I’ve seen a shift from an individual I saw as being open and accommodating to one that turned out to be toxic and greedy. Hire carefully.

  4. Advisors make a difference. Build a diverse group of trustworthy mentors and respected friends. I’ve done this over time, and these are the people I go to in critical times for different perspectives and subject matter expertise. I also look to my established advisors and mentors for referrals and to help evangelize our mission and spread the word about how we can make a difference in this world

  5. Have a plan to prevent and respond to litigious actions. I am a big believer in visionary leadership, core team competencies and strong strategy execution in sustainable deployment and delivery. A company can do its best for its customers and employees and implement a high degree of responsible leadership, but it will most likely encounter a situation where they need to respond legally. I hired an executive in the past that changed drastically — like day and night. Ego and greed can change people’s behaviors and impair the success of the overall team and company. You have to be prepared to mitigate that risk and take action to protect yourself and the company in such situations.

If you want to learn more, please see my thoughts published in the full article from Authority Magazine The Future Is Now: “AI That Detects If People Are Wearing Masks or Social Distancing Properly” With Lars Nordenlund of Cognize


Company and leadership growth initiatives are critical for value creation, even survival, throughout an economic cycle and I help business leaders grow their company through the stages of ideation, incubation, operation and transformation.


I would love to hear your story and start a conversation about how to bring your business to the next level. The first 30 minutes consultation is on me.


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