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Module 1 Summary

Module 1 Summary
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In this first course module, we’ve established that our VUCA world, the volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous environment in which we live and operate, has created the perfect breeding ground for crisis. We’ve spent some time together exploring a functional definition of crisis. Why? This definition helps to remind us of the importance of perspective and how these perspectives can help us frame our leadership responsibilities and priorities during a crisis. High-stakes leadership is certainly not for the faint of heart. But leaders at all levels and in all roles within any organization must develop at least some degree of capacity for crisis leadership.
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They must not simply do so if they are called to provide leadership in a high-stake situation, but when they are called, because they will be. What we’ve really accomplished in this first module is setting the stage for the challenges that lie ahead for all business leaders, not just the most senior among us, but for all of us. “Okay, Professor Barger, you’ve got me. I agree and I’m ready to dive in. Where do we go from here?” Great question. In the final activity in this module, you’ll be asked to set some goals for the course. Based on what you’ve heard so far, what would you like to learn about crisis leadership?
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Perhaps you’re interested in better understanding your stakeholders and how to engage with them before, during, and after a major disruptive event. Perhaps you’d like to learn about specific steps you can take to prevent crisis level events and better prepare for situations that blossom in the crisis. Maybe you’re interested in the crisis environment itself, or the types of crises your organization may have to navigate, or perhaps you’ve got more of an action orientation and you’re interested in crafting a set of steps that you can take as a formally designated crisis leader. Well, while it might sound daunting, we’re going to cover all of those topics in the modules to come.
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Returning to my introduction to this course, I made a few commitments about the content we’ll explore during our time together. Now that you’ve learned a bit about many of these topics, let’s look ahead to the rest of the course to see how future modules will be helping you develop your capability as a crisis leader. In the next module, you’ll explore a bit of stakeholder theory. I know it sounds dry, but I can assure you that it won’t be. During your exploration, you’ll discover how and why a deeper understanding of various stakeholder perspectives can inform and dramatically improve a leader’s response to crisis situations.
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In the modules that follow, you’ll learn about organizational resilience, the ability to anticipate potential threats, to cope effectively with adverse events when they occur, and to adapt to changing conditions to ensure a viable path forward for yourself, your team, and your organization. You’ll also learn why stakeholders should be viewed as your greatest asset in the prevention, management, and recovery from crises. In other words, you’ll learn why your stake holders are your greatest asset in your quest for resilience.
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You’ll also explore some topics, such as how stakeholders react to crises, types of crises an organization might encounter, the unique and challenging nature of the crisis environment, the fundamentals of crisis leadership, and building a plan to prepare yourself, your team, and your organization for your next major crisis, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves. For now, please take a few minutes to craft some personal and if appropriate, some professional goals for this course in the next activity. Then, once you’re satisfied with your hopes and expectations for what you plan to take away from this course, proceed to the next module and begin your deep dive into the notion that crisis leadership demands our focus on stakeholders. I’ll see you there.
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High Stakes Leadership: Leading in Times of Crisis

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