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Finding Strength from Strife

Quote by Nelson Mandela on Leadership
"A real leader uses every issue, no matter how serious and sensitive, to ensure that at the end of the debate we should emerge stronger and more united than ever before."
Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela demonstrated this throughout his life by engaging with his team to make them buy into his vision for a new nation - a rainbow nation, as he called it- and ensure that the goal was to make it stronger and more united than ever. 

Great leaders see an opportunity in every strife and use that to understand the views of everyone impacted and engage with them in a debate to find the right approach. They are clear about their goals in such situations - not to let the issue or challenge create a division but to emerge stronger as one team.

How do they do that? They acknowledge the gravity of the issue, foster open communication, seek common ground amid diverse opinions, embrace the diversity of views respectfully, encourage positive collaboration to find a solution to the strife by focusing on the core issue instead of personalities, seek out what is best for the organization, reinforce unity by celebrating shared achievement and learning from errors and adapting. They avoid the trap of being seen as belonging to a particular camp or playing favorites. 

Size strife as an opportunity to make your team stronger and more united than before. 

Find strength from strife.

Leadership Coaching Questions

  1. How do you acknowledge and address the gravity of challenging situations within your team?

  2. At times of strife, how do you ensure that diverse opinions are heard and actively considered in the decision-making process?

  3. Reflect on a situation where you found focusing on the core issue challenging without allowing personalities or biases to dominate the discussion. What will you do differently next time?

Leadership Poll

How do you actively consider diverse opinions during challenging times?

  • Anonymous suggestion boxes

  • Structured team brainstorming sessions

  • One-on-one feedback sessions

  • Cross-functional focus groups

Get Coached

Suggested Readings

Nelson Mandela Quotes,, AZ Quotes 2024., accessed January 25, 2024.

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