2 min read

371: Leadership Tightrope: Embracing Paradoxes for Effective Leadership

371: Leadership Tightrope: Embracing Paradoxes for Effective Leadership

Tim Elmore, founder of Growing Leaders, joins us to discuss key leadership qualities for the next generation, exploring the balance between confidence and humility. Tune in to discover practical insights for building a flourishing culture in your organization through effective leadership development


Listen to the Audio

Listen in Apple Podcasts | Listen in Spotify  | Listen in Google Podcasts

In this episode:

  • Introduction to Leadership Paradoxes:

    • Al introduces Tim Elmore, an expert in leadership development, discussing the complexities of leadership in the current uncertain world. (03:51)

    • Tim's book, "Eight Paradoxes of Great Leadership," focuses on qualities that may seem contradictory. (03:59)

  • Understanding Paradox:

    • Tim defines a paradox as a contradictory proposition that, when investigated, may prove well-founded and true. (04:30)

    • He emphasizes the importance of navigating paradoxes in leadership, especially in a polarized world where leaders often face either/or dilemmas. (05:29)

  • Confidence and Humility:

    • Tim explores the paradox of balancing confidence and humility in leadership. (06:45)

    • He shares insights from Bob Iger, CEO of Disney, who successfully combined confidence with humility by acknowledging his learning process and seeking input from the team. (6:57)

  • Stubbornness and Open-Mindedness:

    • Tim discusses the paradox of being both stubborn and open-minded. (09:50)

    • Drawing from the example of Truett Cathy, the founder of Chick-fil-A, he emphasizes the need for leaders to identify core principles to be stubborn about while remaining open to adaptability in other areas. (10:19)

  • High Standards and Gracious Forgiveness:

    • Using Harriet Tubman as a case study, he highlights the importance of setting rigorous standards but also providing forgiveness and grace when team members fall short, fostering a culture of innovation. (13:59)

  • Trust in Employee Engagement:
    • Tim addresses the importance of trust in leadership, linking it to employee engagement. (20:02)
    • He provides practical ways to build trust, emphasizing autonomy as a trust-building measure. (20:11)
    • Tim introduces the A LEG acronym for effective communication: Ask, Listen, Empathize, and Guide. He explains each step and highlights the significance of clarifying expectations to avoid conflict. (21:09)
  • Equipping Younger Leaders:
    • Tim shares practical steps for equipping and empowering younger leaders, focusing on the unique traits of Generation Z, such as high agency and high anxiety. (26:22)
    • He suggests frequent check-ins and creating an internal gig economy to engage them effectively. (28:37)
  • Leadership Qualities in Sports:  
    • Tim discusses leadership qualities in sports and athletes, highlighting the prevalence of anxiety and imposter syndrome. He stresses the importance of providing encouragement and fostering a sense of belonging. (34:01)
  • Hope for the Future:

    • Tim offers hope for the future, citing Generation Z's interest in leadership, passion for social justice, and high levels of empathy. He encourages understanding their unique challenges and cultivating a positive outlook. (37:57)

  • Generational Cycles:

    • Tim concludes with a historical perspective, suggesting that tough times often cultivate strong generations, leading to post-traumatic growth. He encourages viewing challenging times as a spiritual fitness center for growth. (41:11)


Read the Transcript

Read a complete, word-for-word transcript of the episode


Follow our Host, Al Lopus, on LinkedIn & Twitter.

Email our host at al@workplaces.org

368: Leadership Under Pressure: Rob McKenna's Guide to Thriving in the Hot Seat

368: Leadership Under Pressure: Rob McKenna's Guide to Thriving in the Hot Seat

Embark on a transformative journey into the heart of intentional leader development with Dr. Rob McKenna, the visionary CEO of WiLD Leaders. Join us...

Read More
387: 5 Keys to Successful Leadership Transitions

387: 5 Keys to Successful Leadership Transitions

Steve Woodworth, CEO of Masterworks, joins us to discuss the crucial differences between successful and disastrous leadership transitions. Steve is...

Read More
393: Adaptive Leadership and Building Trust: Lessons in Leading Off the Map

393: Adaptive Leadership and Building Trust: Lessons in Leading Off the Map

Join us on the Flourishing Culture Leadership Podcast as we explore essential tools for leading change with Tod Bolsinger, author and executive...

Read More