Changing Course not a bad Sign of Leadership?
In a list of possible breakthrough ideas for 2005 in the Harvard Business Review, the number 1 spot is taken by "Flipping without Flopping".
In the 2004 US presedential campaign "flip-flop" was a dirty word. Particularly in times of crisis or opportunity, we expect our leaders to take swift, sure action and then remain steadfast.
According to Professor Kramer, great leaders understand that changing course is sometimes the best thing to do. And changing one's mind does not signal an inability to lead, but rather an ability to learn.
I would argue though that knowing and showing the right direction for the organization is one of the elements that distinguish a true leader from managers. Any human is allowed to make an erroneous judgement now and then, but being wrong about the strategy or course the organization should take is a mistake a true leader will never make.