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Innovation & Creativity

Podcast: Agile leadership

Molly Brown-Pickett
Published: June 2, 2023
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An In Good Company podcast with Molly Brown Pickett, Head of People Development at Asana.

What is agile leadership?

Agile leadership is a term we're hearing more and more these days. Generally referring to an approach to helping people and teams be more adaptive and effective in our VUCA world and dynamic business environments. In this podcast, we look at what it takes to be an agile leader.

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Molly Brown Pickett is Head of People Development at Asana. Based in California she casually describes herself as a 'learning lady', but over the course of her stellar and varied career she has created and led many successful teams in the tech industry. In this episode, Molly’s conversation with Dan ranges from what it takes to be an agile leader, the emergence of AI in learning and development and the similarities between leading a team and a family. Here are some excerpts from their conversation and you'll find the links to listen / watch the full podcast below.

What does it take to be an agile leader?

Finding a rhythm that's natural for employees is a powerful step for a leader to take. Ensuring there is a flow and a chance to focus and a chance to reflect and a chance to start and stop. I personally have found a lot of success running my team in a monthly kind of rhythm, where we start each month with a fresh take on how we're going to hit our quarterly and annual goals and kind of shrink our work into shorter sprints. I find that this is sort of in line with natural rhythms too. If you think about seasons and holidays and just humans existing, they kind of like having things to look forward to and having closure and celebrations. And if you can bring that kind of rhythmic nature to the organisation, I think it helps people deal with chaos, change and feel a little bit more in control in this kind of mad, mad world.

Are you integrating AI into your leadership practices?

It's very new but very present for me and I'm trying stay calm, I don't have to have it all figured out right away. But ChatGPT came into my knowledge when I was leading our company through the annual performance review programme. And I just noticed how quickly people were wondering if it was good or bad to use it to help them write their peer and upward and manager reviews. And it all comes back to agile leadership because it's a new thing that comes into our world and disrupts everything that we know. And it's new, but there's still that innate human ability to make those decisions of “is this going to work or is this going to not work?” And how do we see it end in the right way.

How can you develop leadership agility?

Find out more about Impact’s approach to developing agile leaders and our leadership agility framework here.

Listen to the podcast on Spotify

Watch our interview here:


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004: Leading sustainable business with John Maddy, Long Valley Holidays

Coming up

006: HR, inclusion and diversity with Mukta Arya, Société Générale

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