Trending Content

Culture Shift: Change agility — Moving forward in ambiguity

By Galen Emanuele

August 23, 2023

huge element of change agility is the ability to move through ambiguity. Jeez, that was a mouthful.

But really, it’s vital that leaders are able to guide their teams through uncertainty.

A lot of times when we are going through change, we don’t have all of the answers laid out in front of us. When we don’t have the information we need, it can be scary to be decisive and move forward.

As a leader, it is vital to your team’s success that you possess the ability to move through change without knowing what the outcome will look like.

Why does this matter? Employees take notes from their leader on direction. When folks see an unconfident leader who is scared to move forward in the face of uncertainty, it can make employees feel less confident in their capability to figure stuff out as a team. This lessens morale and doesn’t make anyone feel good. Likewise, when a leader is able to be vulnerable that they don’t have all the answers but stays confident in guiding the team forward on a path to success, employees feel empowered knowing that there is nothing ahead to fear.

If you get stuck waiting until everything is perfect,
you will miss out on the opportunity to grow.

Here’s how to improve your change agility as a leader. When it comes to change, a lot of times leaders experience pushback from folks who are digging their heels in the ground because they don’t have all of the information. You have to be able to guide people past that mindset. You must continue to be decisive and move forward. It’s okay if you don’t have all the answers or know exactly what the future is going to look like — it’s okay to admit that as a leader. However, you can’t stall decisions when faced with uncertainty.

At the speed of change these days, you’ll never know a totally clear path forward. If you get stuck waiting until everything is perfect, you will miss out on the opportunity to grow.

It’s all about resiliency mindset. Leaders, you have to have the grit to take what you know and make the best decision possible despite not knowing every outcome. It’s also okay to be vulnerable and admit that if you don’t make the perfect decision, you can pivot and change. You have to move forward, though.

Don’t let the fear of uncertainty paralyze you and your team when you’re faced with change. Move forward confidently knowing that you and your team are capable of facing whatever future awaits — your people will feel more confident, too.

Galen Emanuele is a speaker and trainer on business leadership and team culture based out of Portland, Ore. Every week, Emanuele produces a video and blog post highlighting vital conversations, building skill sets and showing teams how to drive exceptional culture and leadership. To see more, visit