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10/25/2012

Leading the Future

As the interiors profession heads into the future, designers everywhere must develop a mindset focused around professional and social leadership.

By Barbara Marini, FASID, IDEC

 

Leadership is such an important topic today that it is nearly impossible to peruse a journal, newspaper or blog that doesn’t speak to some aspect of leadership. Colleges and universities are spending considerable resources developing leadership programs in order to prepare graduates for the challenging world that awaits.

Establishing and leading teams that have a propensity for creative thinking; applying high-level problem solving skills; and maintaining a focused, strategic and visionary approach to resolving complex issues is more important than ever.

It takes a particular mindset to lead purposefully in unpredictable times, and these challenges exist within all industries and organizations as a result of the shifting dynamics of a global economy. Whether one manages a small firm, a large business or a conglomerate, strong leadership is needed to guide decisions and set the future direction.

Companies and organizations that are positioned to succeed in the current economy and prepared for the future are that way because of leadership. Leaders who are visionary, who have high levels of integrity and who are open to new ideas are in high demand! These leaders understand collaboration and make conscientious decisions for the good of stakeholders—and with a view of the future.

Leadership is defined and measured through a variety of instruments such as the Basadur Creative Problem Solving Profile (CPSP), the Kirton Adaption-Innovation Inventory (KAI) and the Five Factor Model (the Big Five). While each of these models evaluate and define leadership ability in different ways, the common thread among them is creativity. This unique trait has become a new focus of many leadership programs since it tends to be the “missing link” among leaders and a variable that is difficult to define.

Creative leadership is needed in the world today. The American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) is well-positioned to contribute on a global scale to discussions regarding the built environment. As most designers will tell you, creativity is part of our DNA!


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