Leading through uncertainty – forthcoming book

My new book Leading through uncertainty was born about through my own experience of providing Leadership with Horses workshops for executives and senior leadership teams in large organisations. When I first started working with horses in 2012, everything was uncertain. I had left a successful, highly paid corporate career to set up a business at the height of the recession in 2008 and taken on two horses to work with, having had no previous experiences either with horses or running a business.

Many said I was insane but this is the opportunity and possibility that we can create from uncertainty. There is joy to be had as well as challenge! I am still here navigating uncertainty but more resilient than I was in those early days and more equipped out of my comfort zone. My first book Leadership beyond measure was published in May 2014 and is available on Amazon.

Learning from client experiences

In my research for this book, I interviewed CEOs and executives from a variety of companies across different sectors. Many of them felt that things had always been uncertain and recognised that we need to create more certainty to help others navigate it. I am the host of the Leading through uncertainty podcast series which was born out of the stimulating conversations that led to this book.

Clients work with me because they are navigating the uncertainty that substantial change brings about in the workplace e.g. a joint venture, merger, restructuring programme or perhaps a new job or promotion. As soon as you step out of the known into the unknown, uncertainty is at play.

Self-confidence and self-belief are tested in uncertainty. The two stand out things that are required in uncertainty are emotional resilience and human connection. Yet, they are the two things that people struggle with under pressure.

Emotional resilience

Uncertainty brings about emotional challenges. When you repeatedly operate out of your comfort zone, you can expect to feel stressed and sometimes overwhelmed when you reach your limit. The challenge is to know where your limit is and to build the muscle of resilience so that you can come back stronger.

Fear and polarisation are common in uncertainty. We saw this after Brexit, where the whole of the UK was anxious about the future and views became more polarised and extreme. This is a pattern that has spread throughout the world today. It has been repeated in the US, Russia and the Middle East amongst others.

The book Leading through uncertainty helps make sense of the emotions we experience in uncertainty.

Human connection

In times of uncertainty, we either come together or pull apart. In extreme crisis situations, it is common for people to help strangers, acting from a place of love. Yet in the workplace, there is often judgment and criticism of others which causes people to pull apart.

Leading through uncertainty covers the leadership behaviours we need to adopt to navigate uncertainty. They may not resolve every situation but they go a long way to help us make sense of where we are and to ease the burden for ourselves and each other.

Early feedback for the book

I know from my previous book that readers often find a particular chapter or sentence that resonates with them and challenges how they are working. Readers have told me how my book challenged their thinking and many said it changed their life. That blows me away every time yet I can also list a small number of books that have changed the course of my life.

My intention for Leading through uncertainty is to reach more people. This book will challenge your thinking even more. Some may resist for that reason but I encourage you to explore how uncertainty affects not just you but everyone in your organisation and team because the experience is different for everyone.

Early feedback on the book has been outstanding with endorsements from many leading HR thought leaders and authors.  Here are two of many:

“A thoroughly engaging, human and inciteful book and definitely one for now!”

Gina Lodge, CEO, Academy of Executive Coaching

“Jude’s insights, drawn from both business settings and working with horses, replace a fear of uncertainty with a sense of hope and opportunity.  Her stories inspire; her insights inform, and her tips encourage change. Through her work with horses, she has developed an intensely human capability: to help leaders recognize their style and improve its impact on others.”

Dave Ulrich, Rensis Likert Professor, Ross School of Business, University of Michigan, Partner, the RBL Group

You’ll have to wait for the book to see the rest! I personally cannot wait to share them.

If you are leading through uncertainty or navigating substantial change,

come and find out more and join me at the

Leading through uncertainty book launch on 24th May 2018 in Warwickshire