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Volume 1, Issue 29


Good Leaders are like Meteorologists

We rely on the expertise of meteorologists to tell us everything about the weather—from whether we'll need an umbrella tomorrow to how much we can expect to perspire on the weekend. One management blogger says many employees look to their organizational leaders for similar foresight.


Robin Schooling, a human resources professional, recently made the comparison in a post on her management blog. She writes that leaders are expected to have the ability to use their expertise, knowledge and evaluation skills to "forecast" the future and plan accordingly for it.

As a result, Schooling writes that it's crucial for leaders to develop skills in the following areas:

  • Understanding systems. "With an understanding of systems—two or more parts that work together to accomplish a shared aim—a leader can then move forward to the critical task of identifying important changes that occur within a system and/or predicting with accuracy when they may occur," Schooling writes.
  • Evaluating consequences. "A leader needs to hone his ability to determine the consequences of a change in the long-term or future and weigh the risks [versus] the opportunities in order to take the best course of action," Schooling writes. "Leaders also realize that the situation may change, and they know the evaluation is ongoing."
  • Forecasting and managing the future. "A leader can evaluate all the pertinent factors, including looking at risks and goals, and will make confident decisions and educated predictions," Schooling notes.


This article is from the Jan. 30, 2012 issue.

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