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99 Skills of 21st Century Market Place : Week 11

Welcome to week 11 of the 99 Skills of 21st Century Market Place. This week, we're focusing on three crucial leadership skills that are essential for success in any industry. Thought Leadership, Stress Management, and Decisiveness are all key attributes that every leader must possess in order to navigate the challenges and uncertainties of the modern business world. Whether you're a seasoned executive or an aspiring entrepreneur, these skills are absolutely critical if you want to achieve your goals and build a successful career. So, let's dive in and explore the strategies, tips, and best practices that can help you develop and hone these vital leadership skills

31. Thought Leadership

A Quote:

“Thought leadership is a way to build a relationship with prospects based on knowledge not on products and services” ~ Chris Koch, Film & TV Director

A Definition: Thought leadership is the ability to provide valuable insights, ideas, and perspectives on a specific industry, market, or topic. It involves being at the forefront of innovative and new ideas, and being recognized as an authority on a particular subject.

An Example : Thought leadership is a critical skill for anyone who wants to stand out in their industry. It involves positioning oneself as an expert and providing valuable insights to others. A great example of how thought leadership can help save the day comes from the world of finance. In the wake of the 2008 financial crisis, many people lost faith in the financial industry. In this context, Warren Buffett's thought leadership played a significant role in restoring trust. Buffett is known for his investing expertise, and his annual letters to shareholders have become must-reads in the financial world. During the crisis, he provided insightful commentary and guidance that helped reassure investors and stabilize the market. His thought leadership helped restore confidence in the industry, and his reputation as a sage investor has only grown since then. This example shows the power of thought leadership to not only establish oneself as an expert but also to positively impact an entire industry.

A Checklist:

  • Stay informed and up-to-date on industry trends and developments.

  • Share original insights and perspectives through writing, speaking, or other forms of communication.

  • Build a strong online presence through social media, blogs, or other digital channels.

  • Cultivate relationships with other thought leaders in your field.

  • Be open to feedback and engage with your audience to build a community around your ideas.

32. Stress Management

A Quote:

"The greatest weapon against stress is our ability to choose one thought over another." ~ William James

A Definition: Stress management is the ability to recognise and cope with stress in a healthy and effective way. It involves developing techniques and strategies to reduce or eliminate stressors and to manage the physical and emotional effects of stress.

An Example :

Stress is an unavoidable part of modern-day work-life. In high-pressure situations, the ability to manage stress becomes crucial for employees to maintain productivity, avoid burnout, and contribute to the success of their organisation. One such example is the emergency department (ED) in hospitals where medical professionals face high-stress situations regularly. The ability to manage stress effectively can make a significant difference in the quality of care provided to patients. A study conducted by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) found that high levels of stress can lead to medical errors, job dissatisfaction, and turnover among healthcare workers.

In one instance, a hospital faced a major crisis when a large number of patients were admitted during a natural disaster. The ED was flooded with patients, and the staff had to work for hours on end without breaks, managing multiple emergencies simultaneously. The situation was chaotic and stressful, and the healthcare workers were at risk of burnout. However, the hospital had provided stress management training to its staff, which helped them to stay calm and focused during the crisis. They were able to provide quality care to patients, manage their own stress levels, and work effectively as a team. The ability to manage stress not only helped the staff to provide better care but also helped them to cope with the demands of their job, reduce absenteeism, and improve overall job satisfaction.

Stress management is a crucial skill for professionals in high-pressure work environments. By developing effective stress management strategies, employees can improve their productivity, avoid burnout, and contribute to the success of their organisation.

Another example : In 2009, US Airways Flight 1549 made an emergency landing in the Hudson River after birds struck both engines shortly after takeoff. All 155 passengers and crew survived thanks to the quick thinking of the pilot, Chesley Sullenberger, and his crew. In an interview after the incident, Sullenberger attributed his ability to stay calm and focused under extreme stress to his training in stress management techniques.

Stress management is a critical skill in high-pressure situations like emergency landings, but it is also important in everyday work and life. Excessive stress can lead to burnout, reduced productivity, and even physical health problems. By learning stress management techniques such as deep breathing, mindfulness, and time management, individuals can better cope with stress and maintain their well-being. In turn, this can lead to improved performance and success both personally and professionally.

A Checklist:

  • Identify the sources of stress in your life and develop a plan to address them.

  • Practice relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, meditation, or yoga.

  • Exercise regularly to help reduce stress and improve overall health.

  • Take breaks throughout the day to rest and recharge.

  • Prioritise self-care activities such as getting enough sleep and eating a healthy diet.

33. Decisiveness

A Quote:

"In any moment of decision, the best thing you can do is the right thing, the next best thing is the wrong thing, and the worst thing you can do is nothing." ~ Theodore Roosevelt

A Definition: Decisiveness is the ability to make timely and effective decisions. It involves being confident in your ability to analyze and evaluate information, and to take action based on that analysis.

An Example :

Decisiveness is a crucial skill in any high-pressure situation, and it can make all the difference in a critical moment. In 2019, a group of hikers were trekking through the mountains in the Pacific Northwest when they suddenly found themselves stranded and lost in a sudden snowstorm. The hikers had lost their map and were unsure which direction to go, and the snow was making it increasingly difficult to see and move forward.

One hiker, who had experience in outdoor survival and was known for her decisive nature, quickly took charge of the situation. She assessed their surroundings and made the difficult decision to split the group in half, with one group staying put and the other group venturing out to try and find help. Despite some initial hesitation from the group, they trusted the hiker's decisive judgment and split up as she directed. As luck would have it, the smaller group that ventured out was able to find help and bring back rescue personnel to save the rest of the stranded hikers.

This situation demonstrates the importance of decisiveness, particularly in high-stress and high-stakes situations. Had the hiker not taken decisive action, the group may have continued to wander aimlessly in the snow, putting their lives at even greater risk.

Overall, being decisive means having the ability to analyse information quickly, weigh the pros and cons, and make a choice that aligns with your values and goals. It's a critical skill that can have a significant impact on the outcome of any situation, and it's essential for success in both personal and professional life.

A Checklist:

  • Gather and evaluate all relevant information before making a decision.

  • Set clear goals and objectives to guide your decision-making process.

  • Consider the potential outcomes and consequences of each option.

  • Trust your instincts and intuition, but also rely on data and evidence to support your decision.

  • Take action and be willing to adjust your course if needed based on feedback and results.


Come & Collaborate

Thank you for joining us on this journey through 99 skills at the 21st-century workplace. We believe that the key to success is continuous learning, so we encourage you to keep seeking out new knowledge and skills.

To help you on your path, we are offering a special #DISCovery Session for our readers. This one-on-one coaching session will help you identify your strengths, set career goals, and progress to a personalized plan for success. To book your session, go to at https://go.johnsonodakkal.com/DISCover and use the code "99SKILLS" for a special discount.

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